Belgian architects, Pieterjan Gijs and Arnout Van Vaerenbergh, have completed a remarkable church in Limburg, Belgium. At 10 meters tall (33 feet) made of 100 layers and 2000 columns of steel, it sounds like it would be an imposing presence on the quiet countryside. However, with gaps between each pair of the weathered steel plates, sunlight streams straight through and out the structure making the building appear to dissolve into the landscape. The overall structure of the holy sanctuary, with its pointed spire, is based on the architecture of traditional churches in the region.
The building, called ‘Reading between the Lines,’ is a project by the duo Gijs Van Vaerenbergh, a collaboration between Pieterjan Gijs and Arnout Van Vaerenbergh. ‘Reading between the Lines’ is part of the Z-OUT programme coordinated by the Z33 gallery, which aims to bring art into public space.
From the Gijs Van Vaerenbergh website, “Reading between the Lines can be read as a reflection on architectural themes such as scale, the ground plan etc., but the project also emphatically transcends the strictly architectural. After all, the church does not have a well-defined function and focuses on visual experience in itself (one could even consider it to be a line drawing in space)… because the church does not fulfill its classical function, it can be read as a heritage related reflection on the present vacancy of churches in the area (and their potential artistic reuse).”