On another occasion we already told you about two of the most important in the capital of Finland: Helsinki. These were its two cathedrals, the Lutheran and the Orthodox. Well, today we are going to talk about another temple, but in this case it is different, since it is not ascribed to any creed, nor are religious ceremonies officiated inside. We refer to its Chapel of Silence, which is also a good example of the most current architecture in the city.
Kamppi's Chapel of Silence
As we say, despite its name, it is not a temple itself. It is a space open to the public and its visitors so that they can enter its interior and spend some time reflecting. It is a place where everyone is welcome, regardless of religion, and even if they do not believe in any. It has a civil spirit in the sense that it is a space for the individual. Anyone can enter and anyone can be attended by the Social Services staff who are waiting for them there or, if they wish, by representatives of the various Finnish churches.
But in addition to its use, this is a space dedicated to art, and that is the reason why the Chapel of Silence appears here, as an example of the contemporary architecture of Helsinki.
The work was completed in 2012, coinciding with the designation of the Finnish city as World Design Capital. In fact,its construction was part of that celebration. For this, a very central area was chosen, Narinkka Square within the Kamppi neighborhood.
Given its use, it was about creating a welcoming space. And for that it was decided to use the building material with the longest tradition in Finnish architecture: wood. All of it is built with this material, visible both inside and outside, which also makes it stand out from its modern surroundings, where there are buildings built with glass and steel.
In this way, its fir wood façade, treated in a very traditional way with linseed oil and tar, draws attention. While inside the walls are covered with alder wood, and of course also the simple furniture is made of wood, and with a quite minimalist design as usual in theenvironment B altic Sea and especially in Scandinavia.
Kamppi's Chapel of Silence
Another eye-catcher is the lack of windows. And yet, when we are inside, everything is bathed in natural light, which enters from above through the ceiling. Quite a high ceiling, since it is almost 12 meters above the ground.
All in all, the Chapel of Silence is a good example of contemporary architecture in Finland. But not only that, it is also interesting for its concept of citizen and interreligious space. After all, architecture has always builtbuildings for a specific use and functions, and it has to adapt to the new needs of each moment and each society, and in the case of the Finnish company they have been able to create this common, welcoming and attractive space.
By the way, it's only fair to name the architects who designed it: Kimmo Lintula, Mikko Summanen and Niko Sirola.