Reading between the lines


Like most designers, I spend a little time each day surfing the web for architectural  inspiration. Sometimes it’s project specific in search of an idea, or a project I once came across, sometimes I just search for new projects noticing trends in the industry, or new products & materials. Instinctively though, even without meaning to, I find myself just flicking from one architect’s website to another’s, bouncing from design websites like DEZEEN or Archdaily,…all of which fulfill my daily hit of design outside of our own various projects, & every now & then I come across a project that just makes me stop & wonder. This is one of those projects. It doesn’t come from a clients brief, but from a curiosity from the designers to explore an idea…& that is just awesome.


Named ‘Reading between the lines’, this experimental structure is a collaboration (which we love here at DBRDS) project by young Belgian Architects Pieterjan Gijs & Arnout Van Vaerenbergh. ArchDaily’s article is certainly worth a quick read, so while I wont go into the specifics, but I will elaborate a little on want caught my attention.


At a quick first glance, this structure looks like another little countryside Chapel with its traditional form & typical gothic spire. However, when you look through the photsos from various view points, for its size it can either appear heavy, daunting almost with its industrial rusted metal design…or, from a different view it appears to disappear into the landscape. From a distance, it’s transparency takes over & the seemingly playful vertical structural elements look like ink blotches of a concept sketch laid over an otherwise perfect country site setting…it’s really cool!


Anyway you look at the Chapel, it becomes obvious that the size of this building & its proximity to one of the many nearby Borgloon-Heers Chapels is a playful experiment in both materiality & context. Juxtaposing the industrial raw concrete & rusted metal structure into a soft, postcard perfect Belgian hillside captures the imagination for how new ideas can be derived from traditional forms & spaces. This is what architecture is about.


photographs © Filip Dujardin

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