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R o u n d t a b l e

Transcendent Space by Alan Oakes

Man’s search for God has been described as a limitless horizon of being, and it is in this limitless horizon that architects work to design space where men and women might remove themselves from the noise and confusion of their daily lives. How do architects and their clients go about creating places where people can peaceably commune with God? Texas Architect invited television producer and church historian Alan Oakes to speak with designers and clergy about the common elements of process and design and experience that make space transcendent.

Rick Archer, FAIA Overland Partners, San Antonio

Msgr. Don Fischer The Liturgical Design Consultancy, Dallas

Mark Martof, Morris Architects, Houston

Leslie Elkins, AIA Leslie Elkins Architecture, Houston

Ben Heimsath, AIA Heimsath Architects, Austin

Tom Spencer KLRU’s Central Texas Gardener, Austin

Oakes: Transcendent space takes people on a journey. Martof: We think that your journey actually begins before you get to the building. A church that we did outside of Atlanta – we talked about as you enter the site there’s a bridge and that represented a bridge of leaving your Monday though Friday or wherever you were. Archer:

The journey causes us to step out of our day to day-ness. It’s not business as usual. Something confronts us. It causes us to have to deal with who we are and where we are in a very different way.

Spencer: In sacred spaces, it’s all about journey, and entering, and process, and destination, and communion…if you think about the Christian tradition, there’s no mistaking what’s important to the churches because everything is pointing to it. You’re directed. Your feet are directed. 22

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Texas Architect Nov/Dec 2007: Sacred Space  

Texas Architect is the official publication of the Texas Society of Architects, each edition features recently completed projects and other...

Texas Architect Nov/Dec 2007: Sacred Space  

Texas Architect is the official publication of the Texas Society of Architects, each edition features recently completed projects and other...