Church Sun-pu

JA+U : Church Sun-pu by Taira Nishizawa Architects
From the street or a passing train, it is hard to miss the Church Sun-pu, completed in 2008. Apart from the entrance located on a corner, the cubic chapel is clad with rough-hewn red cedar strips. The irregular surface produces an interplay of light and shadow, changing the appearance of the building at every moment and angle. The untreated wood will turn to a silver gray in a few years.

JA+U : Church Sun-pu by Taira Nishizawa Architects
Inside the 104 m2 (1,120 ft2) chapel, the walls and ceiling are covered with horizontal pine slats. Daylight from above seeps through slits lining the ceiling and sidewalls, producing, what the architects describes as, a “gauzy quality” to the sacred space.

JA+U : Church Sun-pu by Taira Nishizawa Architects
Wooden trusses support a 1,330 mm-thick (52 inches) ceiling and 760 mm-thick (30 inches) walls, which are covered with thick fabric and glass wool insulation to block out the noise of the adjacent railway. At eye level, the closely paneled slats help the voices to resonate. The gaps widen as the walls get higher, to help disperse reverberation.

JA+U : Church Sun-pu by Taira Nishizawa Architects
Other functions of the church are contained in the gabled roof structure adjoining the chapel.

 
This is one of one hundred works selected from the previous years’ JA Yearbook and featured in our recently published ebook: JA Yearbooks: 100 Works.