Exhibition: 25.06.2013 – 05.07.2013

Studio 5 - Immanence and Presence

Urnes Stave Church, drawing from ‘Sacred Architectures’ book by Anja Funston

Studio led by Nina Lundvall & James Payne

About the show

The year was divided between a series of alternating research and design projects in which we explored sacred architecture. Not so much as a question of typological, functional or stylistic considerations but with more fundamental architectural questions that might lead us to re-consider religious and spiritual buildings anew. Could immanence be found through presence? Presence in many tangible and detailed ways; of materials and their qualities and assembly, and of people, sounds and light.

We started the year with a wide ranging and collaborative research and drawing project. Students selected and researched their own precedent for the ‘Sacred Architectures’ book. This compilation of references from many different eras and cultures was produced with the aim of provoking an open-ended discussion about the nature of sacred architecture. Each example shows clearly the cultural basis of their form, they are not arbitrary compositions.

The first design project was a space for contemplation in a busy institutional or public context , St. Bart’s Hospital, Euston Station and The Cass university building. This was non-denominational, ‘multi-faith’ or secular and removed from a specific religious context to explore the architectural themes explored in the first research project.

We were also interested in the potential for a religious building to act as a focus for a community, our study trip took us to Glasgow to visit the churches of Gillespie, Kidd & Coia as well as Copenhagen in Denmark and Malmö in Sweden. All of these places were the focus for a wave of innovative church building in the post-war era as centres for new suburban communities. Students were asked to survey a detail during the trip and produce a set of construction drawings and a detail model. This concern for material presence was taken further in collaboration with architect and furniture designer Simon Jones who set a short design and material research project to make door handles for a religious building.

The final project unfolded over four sites in London on urban and semi-urban sites, second year students designed a small community church and third years developed their own brief for a religious building. The exterior presence as well as the interior experience was considered and the potential of the new building to contribute to a public space and context. Each project drew on reference and material research with rigorous supporting research into liturgy, ceremony and community.

Exhibition details

P.V. Tuesday 25 June 2013, 6.30pm-10pm
Opening Wed 26 June - Fri 5 July 2013
Mon-Fri 10am-7pm, Sat 11am-5pm
Venue Spring House (1st Floor)
Studio Architecture Studio 5
Course Architecture BA (Hons) RIBA Part 1

Students' work

Urnes Stave Church, drawing from ‘Sacred Architectures’ book

by Anja Funston

Horyuji Buddhist Temple, Japan, drawing from ‘Sacred Architectures’ book by Sam Trice

First Design Project for a Contemplation Space, St.Bart’s Hospital by Marc Vasvari

Bishops Bench, Klippan & Sprial Stair, Grundtvig's Church

Julija Cholopova & Daniel Olafsson

Vestry Cabinet designed by Jørn Utzon for Bagsvaerd Church, Copenhagen by Sam Trice

Left:Plaster door handle designs. Right: Concrete door handle design

by Dhiren Appadoo & Sam Trice

Islamic Prayer Space, Clerkenwell Road, corner site

by Dhiren Appadoo

Clerkenwell Road Elevation, Gap site opposite Italian Church

by Aodhan Toland

Church Interior, York Way site, King’s Cross

by Cindy Reriti

Sketch model, Community Church on York Way, King’s Cross

by Hector Martin

Model of Community Church, Clerkenwell Road

by Fadi Christian Majeed

First Floor plan, Community Church on Clerkenwell Road, corner site

by Ryan Hinson

Development of Massing, Methodist Mission Church, Kingsland Road

by Lyndon Jones

First and Ground Floor Plan, Methodist Mission Church, Kingsland Road by Lyndon Jones

Seventh Day Adventist Church, Kingsland Road

by Marc Vasvari

1:50 model, Buddhist Centre on York Way, King's Cross

by Nora Szosznyak

Interior view: Contemplation spaces and Stupa, Buddhist Centre, King’s Cross by Nora Szosznyak

Section, Quaker Meeting House, Clerkenwell Road

by Rosie Minkler

Plan and Elevation, Salvation Army Church, Clerkenwell Road, gap site

by Sam Trice

Community Church, Clerkenwell Road, gap site opposite Italian Church by Sharifa Haidari


Farhan Ahmed
Sajid Ahmed
Dhiren Appadoo
Cristian Bucataru
Julija Cholopova
Fadi Christian-Majeed
Anja Funston
Lyndon Jones
Sharifa Haidari
Ryan Hinson
Rija Khawaja
Hector Martin
Marzia Marzorati
Rosie Minkler
Daniel Olafsson
Cindy Reriti
Faisal Shaik
Nora Szosznyak
Lovely Tinoso
Aodhan Toland
Sam Trice
Marc Vasvari


Fabrizio Ballabio
Owen Watson
David Grandorge
David Leach
Ioana Marinescu
Daniel Serafimovski
Florian Beigel
Philip Christou
Aidan Hodgkinson
Simon Jones


Daniel Dean, Ramboll
Simon Jones