The Nascimento Chapel is located in a private property at the mountains of Rio de Janeiro. It is a contemporary private chapel, an unusual commission, even though all over the world many of the most important architects has a religious building on their portfolios. We took advantage of the topography to create a lake, so that the construction could hover over it and also works as a mirror for the architecture.
Its facade, doubled by reflection, defines the very same curve of its floor plan. The building is inspired by important Brazilian architectural and artistic movements. Initially with colonial architecture, rich on private chapels. Then with the baroque movement, recurrent in the religious architecture of the country, through the design of its metal frames that works as sculptures in space.
And finally it uses part of the modernist repertoire, not only because of the strong presence of the brises soleil, but also because of the curved shape of the floor plan and the façade The project is based on three elements. A 4 meter wide wood bridge balances on central pillars that disappear giving the impression of the building flying over the water pond.
At the end of this bridge a glass box defines the enclosed space.Enveloping this whole set, 25 rectangular steel frames of varying sizes draw a curve in space, defining a building that expands and retracts. These gates function as brise soleils that bring shade and privacy to the prayer space.
The Chapel follows one important tradition on brazilian architecture that is the construction of religious spaces on private residences. During the colonial period (especially sec XVIII and XIX), over the influence of portuguese architecture most of the farms had it own private chapel..