Monolithic Church in Amsterdam Filters Both Sunrise and Moonlight in A Magical Way

by in Architecture

The architects from F70 Architecture worked on a very special project in the South Eastern part of Amsterdam. Wi Eegi Kerki (Surinamese for Our Own Church) is a beacon of light in this part of Amsterdam (Bijlmer), the poorest part of the town. 

The sunlight and the moonlight enter the church through a huge hidden skylight. "It feels like a higher power watches over you." says one of the visitors.

The light and the white color have a great importance in the liturgy of the Moravian Church, the originator of Wi Eegi Kerki. Both have therefore become the central elements of the building which is characterized by a simple composition.

The entrance and the kitchen are the central parts of the church. 

The balcony that hangs in the loft welcomes the visitors that entered the main assembly hall. At this point, they experience the nine-meter high space they eventually enter as even larger than it actually is.

Across the full width of the room, there's also a 13-meter high tower with a skylight. Through it, the sunlight falls on the white wall where the visitor looks at. Where this light actually comes from, remains a mystery to most visitors.

The appearance of Wi Eegi Kerki is sober and introvert. On the outside, the church has a strong monolithic character. The mound on which the church is built contributes to this effect. The interior looks organized and clear. 550 simple white chairs are ready for the guests, ornaments and decorations are almost non-existent.

It took the parishioners 15 years to save enough money to start this church project. In 2006, they approached 70F Architecture. After a long design process, the final design was be presented to the strict supervision committee of the district of Amsterdam Southeast in 2009. 

Supervisors Ton Schaap and Michael van Gessel were enthusiastic about the design and urban integration: "The Church is in its bold architectural plasticity and restrained use of materials an asset to this district." they said.

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