Hubertus Chapel
By CAN28-08-2017Popularity:21220 Comments

„…it is good for us to be here…” /Mark 9:5/

There is a tent at the edge of the forest, erected out of wood. Horses are grazing around on the open meadow. Underneath the roof an altar stands with three stools. A place for liturgy, the descendant of wayside shrines and baroque triangular spaces. Not yet a chapel, nevertheless it is a church. The sanctuary of the glade where people gather around wearing khakis outfits. Some are carrying horns, antlers, others are decorating the area for the Saint Hubertus ceremony. The closed community of the Hunters is the keeper of an ancient tradition: the ritual of chasing and killing for a living. Therefore, their place is far from settlements. The beat of the bell fills the air marking the end of the preparation. Much too small compared to its sound, it is the only permanent ornament of the sacred space. The triangular sanctuary opens towards the audience, yet it remains unclosed in the back too, leading the spectator's view into infinity. The furniture is gone by the end of the day and the horses return to the field. A tent stands on its own in the glade framed by the silence of the primeval forest.


The intention of the forestry was to create a chapel-like building for the hunters to celebrate Saint Hubertus Day. They needed a built frame for their event, but had no well-founded spatial concept, so the key was to make clear rules for the design initiative.


GOALS: (i) liturgy: to determine the functional and spatial structure of the locally unique holy mess; to provide ceremonial space for 300 people

(ii) objet trouvé: to find a sacral reference that complements the otherwise profane surroundings

(iii) materiality: to use timber (from the forestry)



(i) liturgy: The invocation of the ephemeral atmosphere of outdoor masses.

(ii) objet trouvé: Wayside shrines are the unique elements of this region's sacred architecture. Their history is founded on the influence of German baroque architecture, resulting in various types of representations of the Holy Trinity. The postament of these sculptures is traditionally a three-sided column, representing the mysterious number 3, which became the cornerstone of our design scheme.

(iii) materiality: Timber is the only material used. The roof, the floor, the joints and the furniture are all made out of locally forested wood.


The chapel's architecture is a compound of these three instruments above. The layout is an equilateral triangular space opening towards the audience. The volume levitates over the grass. The altar and the three stools follow the construction method of the chapel itself as a series of wooden frames. The furniture is mobile, yet its form and material define its place in the sanctuary.

in the landscape

interior view


the altar

the roof

at night



key: religius, chapel, wood, sacred, timber
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