Ars Moriendi: chapel / crematorium / columbarium
Heaven wheels above you, displaying to you her eternal glories, and still your eyes are on the ground. Dante Alighieri
The passing from life to death is a threshold that joins and separates the visible with the invisible, the material with the immaterial, and, for some, the mundane with the divine. For many religions, death represents one’s face to face meeting with God, a beatific vision found in the attainment of perfect happiness. The notions of life after death and death after life open up complex intermediary places and spaces for the imagination to inhabit various levels of reality. This studio focuses on the role of life and death in architecture, both as a real project and as a metaphorical approach to the work of the architect. The program revolves around the funerary ritual of cremating or burying the body, and it includes a chapel, a crematorium and a columbarium. This project is an addition to the Alexandria National Cemetery.
Ars Videndi: Urban Multi-Plex
Going to the cinema is like returning to the womb; you sit there, still and meditative in the darkness, waiting for life to appear on the screen. Federico Fellini
King Street, Alexandria is without a movie theater – the old one, which was never made as a movie theater has been converted back to its Vaudeville roots and the movies are without a place – the street is not in the twenty-first century because this vital art form of our time is missing. This project proposes the design of an Urban Multi-Plex at the “Times Square Site” of Old Town, the corners of King Street, Commerce Street and Fayette Street. At least 7 to 9 choices of movies should be available with the theater size ranging from an audience capacity of 25 for the smallest to 150 for the largest – plus the complement of service facilities, also to be provided is a snack area that is open to the theater but can stand alone as a place to visit and linger.
Studio Co-Authored with JAAN HOLT