a church and masterplan for Herentals

location: Herentals
completion: competition, Vlaams Bouwmeester, OO3707
client: Kerkfabriek Onze-Lieve-Vrouw te Herentals
program: All-inclusive study assignment for the elaboration of a development vision and for the construction of a contemporary Catholic church and sacred meeting space in the broader surroundings of the Church of Our Lady in Herentals
masterplan: i.s.m.architecten i.c.w. Muoto & rAAk
images: i.s.m.architecten i.c.w. Muoto
consultants: rAAk, Bollinger + Grohmann, Kahle Acoustics, Bureau Bouwtechniek, RACO, Cluster

with thanks to: Lauren Vangilbergen for his assistance

This church situated in Flanders takes the form of a holy mountain. The figure of the mountain is recurring in Christian texts. It appears as a place of retreat, prayer and communion. Its verticality represents the cosmic link between heaven and the mundane world of our daily lives. The concrete structure, partly covered with wild grass, appears as worn-out and sculpted by rainy waters running towards a pond created at the bottom of the church, among the hollow remains of an old fortification.