architecture for meditation: step inside a chapel in korea by lee eunseok & atelier KOMA

architecture for meditation: step inside a chapel in korea by lee eunseok & atelier KOMA

a meditation chapel for introspection in nature

 

The Meditation Chapel, perched amongst the serene landscape of Ganghwa, South Korea, stands as a unique retreat from urban life with architecture by Lee Eunseok and Atelier KOMA. The concrete structure is designed not as a traditional place of worship within a vibrant community, but as a quiet, remote sanctuary in the trees for solitary travelers. The chapel brings a small prayer space for these modern pilgrims, embracing functional simplicity, and serving as a vessel for introspection.

meditation chapel lee eunseokimages © Kim Yongseong (unless otherwise stated)

 

 

the lifted box by lee eunseok + atelier koma

 

Lee Eunseok and Atelier KOMA design the architectural form of the Meditation Chapel to express its purpose, with a simple volume set amidst the vast natural surroundings. This lifted box symbolizes a ‘separation from the secular world,’ creating a reverent space through a minimal sequence and vertical expansion. Unlike approaches that extend paths for leisurely strolls, the design allows visitors to quickly reach the open sky and stand alone in contemplation, lending a direct connection with nature. 

meditation chapel lee eunseok
the Meditation Chapel is designed as a retreat for solitary reflection within nature

 

 

atmosphere symbolized through architecture

 

The interior of the Meditation Chapel is divided into four surfaces, which architect Lee Eunseok and Atelier KOMA have dedicated to a specific theme — the sea, sound, light, and background. The front wall opens out with large picture windows, framing views across the distant landscape and the West Sea beyond. The rear surface hosts the organ, an intricate instrument contrasting the austere concrete — listen to the organ on the architect’s social media here! Twelve funnel-shaped stained-glass windows fill the side wall, and symbolize nature with their organic lines and green hues — abstracted motifs of greenery unlike medieval churches. The entrance wall is left empty, although at sunset it becomes a screen for golden light.

meditation chapel lee eunseok
the architecture symbolizes a ‘separation from the secular world’

meditation chapel lee eunseok
the rear wall frames a large, intricate organarchitecture for meditation: step inside a chapel in korea by lee eunseok & atelier KOMA
the front wall opens out to the distant landscape and the sea beyond

meditation-chapel-lee-eunseok-plus-atelier-koma-korea-designboom-06a

the side wall is shaped by twelve funnel-shaped stained-glass windows

architecture for meditation: step inside a chapel in korea by lee eunseok & atelier KOMA
the entrance wall is left empty, and becomes a screen for golden light at sunset

meditation-chapel-lee-eunseok-plus-atelier-koma-korea-designboom-08a

set in forested surroundings, the chapel’s simple volume fosters a space for contemplation

 

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image © Urban Azit
image © Urban Azit
image © Urban Azit
image © Urban Azit
image © Urban Azit
image © Urban Azit
image © Urban Azit
image © Urban Azit
area plan
area plan
first floor plan
first floor plan
second floor plan
second floor plan
roof plan
roof plan
landscape section
landscape section
section
section
section
section
section
section
elevations, interior elevations
elevations, interior elevations
exploded axonometric
exploded axonometric
facade details
facade details

project info:

 

project title: Meditation Chapel

architecture: Lee Eunseok + Atelier KOMA

location: Ganghwa, South Korea

completion: 2023

photography: © Kim Yongseong, Urban Azit

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ARCHITECTURE IN KOREA (400)

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