Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Cistercian Abbey Church, Irving, Texas, Cunningham Architects, 1992

Like the Lullington church, the Cistercian Abbey Church  by Cunningham Architects has a refreshing solidity rarely seen in modern construction, largely because the use of load-bearing stone is so expensive.  The Texas limestone blocks of the sanctuary average 3’ x 6’ x 2’.

Though Romanesque-inspired, the church underlines its modernity with plain concrete columns, stainless steel cables that hold the glue-lam roof in tension, and the most innovative and effective feature in the space:  a gap between the roof and the wall covered by glass tiles that allows light to wash down over the rough surface of the limestone, turning it into a textural delight equal to any stained glass.

via archdaily, photos by James F. Wilson.

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