Ephemeral social use of Św. Jana. Gdańsk

The historic church of Św. Jana in the city of Gdańsk is a gothic church which has been converted into a multi-cultural space where various activities from concerts to speeches take place.

In the context of Jamm’Art two architects, Nicholas Anastasopoulos and Christopher Guest, collaborated in converting the typical unidirectional congregation seating of the nave of the church at the intersection of the two main axes, into a circular seating arrangement where the energy of the conversation is re-directed into the center rather than focus on one speaker giving the sermon.

This was an ephemeral act aiming at two goals:

To physically test the spatial response and effectiveness of the medieval church typology, by exploiting the potential of the cross of the two main axes in a function other than the one intended

To symbolically subvert the surrender to the divine, which was the purpose of faith and religion,  and bring it back to the earth with a focus towards the center of a human circle.

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