Rwanda Chapel

The palace of Mwami in Rwanda shaped as a dome, become a symbol of local civilisation. The dome isthe important symbol to synchronise with local identity. In the meanwhile it also represents with publicand religious as new typology.

Client

Rwanda City Insitution

Type

Architecture

Year

2022

Status

Concept

Size

1385 m²

Location

Rwanda,

Team

Kai Wang, Hui Lu, Hengwei Ji, Xiaoting Li

The palace of Mwami in Rwanda shaped as a dome, become a symbol of local civilisation. The dome isthe important symbol to synchronise with local identity. In the meanwhile it also represents with publicand religious as new typology.

Above the dome
The space above the dome become a new public space for all races and Christian gathering. It also beemphasised by the columns surrounding it. At night, there will be a light penetrating from underground,
illuminating the surrounding as a center cross. The center cross also link with the 4 leading pathsconnecting with surrounding. The center dome symbolises the integration of various classes and races.

surrounding the domeThe genocide of 1994 cast a shadow over the history of Rwanda. Above 1millions people dead. Thesurrounding columns which are made by the rammed earth digged out from underground, represent thesoul of people who has passed away in the massacre, it become a group of protectors and witnesses,
surround the center public dome, which represent the peace has been exchanged by their predecessorswith blood and tears.

Under the dome
The chapel as the main program covered by the dome, interacting with the space above. It generated
sacred space with linear order. The space order is divided by three themes – misery, blessing andreincarnation. It is linked with three main programes – atrium, nave and presbytery, shaped by threeinterlocked circle space, in order to generate a center for each. The atrium space is center with amemorial altar, which is engraved with the name of the deceased who were killed in the genocide. Thepool reflected the cross from ceiling of the nave. Then the nave space become the center of the threespace, the ceiling of it projects a cross sunlight into interior. The center of nave is the space for priestwith the ambo. the third circle is special for presbytery with double wall, in-between of the wall can gothrough by the Christian, to get reincarnation when the view connect with center cross.