The Open Church challenges the traditional notion of a closed religious space

Open Church - Embracing Infinity

The Open Church – Embracing Infinity is a conceptual design by Moshe Katz Architect, located on the banks of the river Arno in Florence, Italy. The design challenges the traditional notion of a closed religious space and aims to create an open and inclusive environment for spiritual and community gatherings.

The architectural concept revolves around breaking the boundaries of the traditional church structure, symbolizing the need to transcend limitations. By cutting the church’s building box into its corners, the architect discovered the independent identity of the facade wall as a significant element.

The facade, now transformed into a transparent wall of light, represents the infinite and unbounded nature of spirituality.

Open Church - Embracing Infinity

A thin steel structure and beams connect the facades, forming a symbolic cross that motivates unity and connection among people. The space itself is open in all directions, seamlessly integrating with the surrounding park.

Nature and human nature converge without clear delineations, fostering a sense of fluidity and harmony between the natural and ritual environments. The Open Church serves as both a sacred space for religious purposes and a gathering space for the community at large. It is envisioned as an urban cultural center that brings people together through the interplay of space and light.

The structure’s individual elements, while distinct, are strongly interconnected, symbolizing the strength of individuals within a unified community. Light, the sun, and nature serve as guiding forces that bind the space together.

Open Church - Embracing Infinity

The materiality of the Open Church reflects a contemporary reinterpretation of Florence’s architectural heritage. Instead of traditional bricks, glass bricks/blocks are used to construct the individual light screen walls.

Each block contains a light fixture, embodying a spiritual transition from matter to light or light to matter. The Open Church – Embracing Infinity is not merely a physical space but a catalyst for expanding perspectives, fostering connections, and discovering the divinity within ourselves and our surroundings.

It encourages individuals to embrace freedom and interconnectedness, creating a new understanding of the self, the city, and spirituality.

Open Church - Embracing Infinity

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