20 June 2023

When designing for a community, a whole series of parameters have to be taken into account if the final result is to faithfully represent that community: not only the community’s self-image, but also how much of itself it wants to reveal to the rest of the world. It is a process the designer must have at its fingertips if the outcome is to be something more than a functional, esthetically pleasing building. The architecture produced must be a three-dimensional statement conveying a clear, consistent message for those who frequent the building and those viewing it from outside. Here, architecture must be an unambiguous text, giving rise to no misunderstanding by anyone, whatever their background or culture and whether or not they belong to the community in question. Far from easy when this kind of architectural brief involves social, educational or administrative buildings, it is doubly so in the case of a commission to design a place of worship.

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