• Ankaramalaza, Madagascar
  • Type: Spiritual
  • Project Area: 427 sq m
  • Completed: 1996

This unique church in Ankaramalaza, Madagascar is designed to regularly accommodate 850 people with the ability of accommodating an additional 1,000 people. Three or four times a year, the Malagasy Lutheran ‘Jubilee’ revival movement attracts around 2,000 people, often traveling by canoe down crocodile-infested waters, from near and far. During these revival celebrations, the permanent structure of the church expands by use of fabric sails – creating a tented forecourt. The steeple doubles as an support for the sails, while the pillars surrounding the forecourt create a sense of enclosure and demarcate a gathering place even when not used for anchoring the sails. A system of doors built into the walls of the church, when opened, allow the space of the main sanctuary to merge with the surrounding forecourt and landscape.