Handcrafted by old-school shipbuilders and assembled on-site by a local family in Munho-ri, near Seoul, the Egg Chapel is a beautiful example of original architectural work constructed with the support of a local community. The small, non-denominational pilgrimage destination was designed by New York-based architect Andrew MacNair to provide an intimate space for weddings, baptisms and anniversaries in the South Korean town.
The wood parts were handcrafted by boat builders in Rhode Island and New York, and then shipped in 12 vertical sections to Inchon in South Korea. The Chapel is 30 feet high, 14 feet wide at the floor and 22 feet wide at its maximum girth. It is built on top of a concrete crypt — a structural foundation and underground quiet room. Supporting the base ring are 6 round concrete columns, which help anchor the wood chapel to the ground.
Situated high in the mountains of Yangpyeong County, the chapel entrance faces south so that direct afternoon sunlight can illuminate the structure’s center and bathe the altar in daylight. The position of the openings and the sheltering cylindrical shape reinforce the spiritual experience of the space. The intimate atmosphere is enriched by spiritual symbolism within the architectural design itself; the egg as the “seed of life“, a symbol of birth and rebirth which transforms the an apparently lifeless object out of which comes life.