Even secular people can appreciate sublime religious architecture like this chapel in South Africa. Coetzee Steyn designed the Bosjes Chapel for his hometown, taking inspiration from the Book of Psalms. Head of Steyn Studio, the architect’s undulating winged roof mimics the mountainous background, creating a symbiotic relationship between the chapel and its natural surroundings. Flip through the gallery for a closer look.
The chapel, whose construction process was led by South African-based TV3 Architects, is located on a pomegranate orchard on the Bosjes Farm in the Western Cape Province. Set into the rural landscape, the roofs many undulating arches mimic the silhouette of the Waaihoek Mountain range in the background, an architectural nod to traditional Cape Dutch gabled architecture found along the plains of the province. The architects also chose to forgo the traditional spire in order to create a strong sense of connection between the built and natural environment.
The chapel’s white roof, which was constructed with cast iron, hovers over approximately 4,500-square-foot of space. On the outside, an elongated path in the middle of two reflecting pools leads visitors to the entrance. The interior space is simple, with a white undulating ceiling and polished terrazzo floors reflecting off each other to play with light and shadows throughout the day. Inside the chapel, glazed floor-to-ceiling walls give the space an ethereal atmosphere, flooding the interior with natural light and offering stunning views of the mountainous backdrop.
Photography by Adam Letch