LOCATION : Aurora, Illinois
MARKET : Cultural, Cultural, Education
Marmion Academy

Spiritual sanctuary on campus

Marmion Chapel embraces the realm between nature and architecture. It uses light as a part of the architecture to define and create space. The stained-glass crucifix is integral to its architecture, and is reflected in the landscape beyond. The light from the cross and flanking slits on the building dematerialized, illuminate, and transform the interior. This has a surreal effect that changes material into immaterial, dark into light, light into space. The intersection of light and solid raises the occupants' awareness of the spiritual within themselves. While the interior is primarily defined by the leaded-glass crucifix, wood is used for all the elements that one engages such as the tables, pews, and floor. This chapel is a place of retreat where the outside world is forgotten, and the natural world is emphasized abstractly, through its control of the light. This chapel reflects the fundamental simplicity of Christianity with its elemental, yet powerful design.