DDF 04 - 08 - 2010

The implementation of the epic narrative within my studio project should aspects of both the community and Christian faith. After doing some research on the local area of the canal and my specific site, I found that the area was rejuvenated after the canal was built. Before the revitalization of the canal, the area as well as the “ditch” that was the original canal were in disrepair. The community struggled to keep its identity after the end of Indianapolis’s industrial revolution and before the start of the Canal walk, but after much perseverance it is now one of the most desirable areas of downtown. I want to explore this journey that the local area experienced and compare it to the journey of becoming a Christian. This narrative journey can be expressed in the building and landscape forms. It should be evident in all parts of the design, not just in specific wall panels or sculptural elements. This can be accomplished in several ways. First, on the initial approach to the church, visitors will meander through the gardens, struggling to find a direct path to the entrance. I want to make sure that the entry sequence is intriguing, yet still inviting, as that is one of the main concepts of the design. Along the journey, glimpses of the axial water feature will appear, possibly with Bible verses placed on elements within the water. These glimpses will be small signs of hope to foreshadow what lies ahead in the journey. When they finally reach then entrance to the building, the transformation from interior to exterior will be unclear. This space will show that change does not happen all at once, it is a process that takes time. Also, it will encourage more visitors to enter the building because of the lack of an intimidating entrance that is often seen in more traditional churches. Once inside, the guests will have to cross over a small bridge to the sanctuary, the ultimate goal of the journey. The sanctuary sits separate from other spaces inside the building appearing to float or be elevated with a small area around the sanctuary being open to the floor below. This separation actually creates more of an opportunity for connection within the church as it opens up the lower floor (canal level) to the upper floor (street level). Along the interior/exterior boundary being blurred, it might also be possible to blur the distinction between street level and canal level.

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