Architectural firm LOOS.FM was given the challenge of creating a landmark, a meeting spot for visitors at the 2011 Grenswerk Festival in Enschede Netherlands. The creative designers decided to build a temporary pavilion resembling a church, from larger than life Lego-like blocks (Abondantus Gigantus). Why a church? “We searched for a recognizable building; the oddness of proportions only works if the image is recognized. The choice therefore fell on a church with a spire 20 meters tall. A church is a community building where people come together. It also serves an important role in organizing the public space: a church is always in the center of an area. In the same manner in which lighthouses guard a border and bridges connect people, a church centers an area.” The pavilion is made from multifunctional concrete blocks of a type usually used in dumping grounds near harbors and iron scrapyards, or for sheltering potatoes. They can easily be stacked and are versatile in their use. The designers arranged the blocks to resemble a honeycomb, allowing sufficient light and air to enter the interiors. The interiors house a stage for musical performances and other activities. The pavilion makes a connection between something grand and overwhelming and something playful, simple and comprehensible. “The reference to Lego bricks often calls up feelings of remembrance, sentiment and creativity. The size of the church on the other hand, inspires the spectator with awe.” Considering the increasing global popularity of Lego blocks, this building may serve as an example to all of what is possible.

Abondantus Gigantus

 

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