Kaira Looro International Competition - Senegal
Cult, introspection, spirituality, rest, identity: these are some of the themes translated through an architectural perspective to design a versatile space which can serve several varieties of cult. This is the place where every visitor can seek his own spirituality through an experience of personal introspection and detachment from reality; the centre around which architectural spaces and shapes are created. A space where brightness and lightness connect the divine and the earthly dimensions, creating an architecture of transition.
Externally, the impression is the one of a massive structure which then reveals itself as an open and bright place of seclusion and meditation. This impression is conveyed by the direct connection to the sky, lightened by a steel and wood structure where the contrast between light and shadow are made by bands of light entering through the brickwork cracks.
The building, whose beginning is pointed out by a pedestal elevating the building itself, provides the local community with a common space, a meeting point where rest and comfort can be found.
The result is a cubic volume not only as archetype representation of simple, primordial and pure architecture, but also like a monumental and powerful building that can be a landmark throughout the country.
The interior revolves around the sacred space, a free plan made by a structure of pillars and wooden beams that leaves people free to use it.
A walkway path works as filtering area between the inner and the sacred space, releasing and purifying from the outside world in order to enter in a worship space.
Part of the base is made by a tank collecting water from the roof, which can be used by the locals to cool themselves as well as for other functions.
The use of local natural conveys a strong identity to the building, highlighting a solid connection with the surrounding area and a will of a sustainable and cheap intervention which nevertheless does not lead to reduce the solemnity of the building.