Designing Sacred Spaces: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Designing Sacred Spaces

1st Edition

By Sherin Wing


320 pages

Look Inside
Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Paperback: 9780367028312
pub: 2018-12-04
Hardback: 9780415745000
pub: 2015-12-16
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315798226
pub: 2015-10-05
from $19.98

FREE Standard Shipping!


Sacred spaces exemplify some of the most exciting and challenging architecture today. Designing Sacred Spaces tells the inside story of seven architecture firms and their approaches to designing churches, mosques, synagogues and temples, monasteries and retreats. Twenty beautifully illustrated case studies located in Asia, Europe, and North America are showcased alongside discussions with the designers into concept and design development, materiality, and spatial analysis. Complementing these are essays on the cultural, historical, and theoretical meaning and importance of sacred spaces. By exploring the way we see religion and how we understand secular and sacred space, Designing Sacred Spaces reveals how we see ourselves and how we see others. A tour-de-force of first-person narratives, research, and illustrations, this book is a vital desk reference.


"Equal parts fascinating history-theory, illuminating design diary and dialog, and feast for the eyes and soul, Wing’s Designing Sacred Spaces is a compelling and beautifully structured book that teaches us, not only about religion and culture, but about design process, perception, and the power of space to be transcendent. It’s a fascinating read with multiple voices and points of view. A welcome addition to anyone’s library, certainly not just those of architects." - Alice Kimm, JFAK Architects and Adjunct Associate Professor, USC School of Architecture, USA

"Sherin Wing is changing the architectural dialog for the better. In this rigorously researched, thoughtful, well-written book she argues against the European/American centric examination of our built environment, and opens the discourse by including sacred spaces around the globe. She argues and proves that architecture is at its best when it represents unique and complex cultures, a specific locality as well as its policies and beliefs. What better place to start human habitation than in the spiritual realm?" - Susan S. Szenasy, Publisher and Editor in Chief, Metropolis, USA

"An inspiring book that is as thorough and insightful as it is beautiful. An excellent reminder of the heights that contemporary architects can achieve." - Sam Lubell, Contributing Editor, The Architect's Newspaper, USA

"In this volume, Sherin Wing has created a primer on the architecture, ritual, and design of contemporary sacred spaces. Featuring the works of seven architects, her exceptionally clear writing presents interviews alongside foundational essays, drawings, and photographs to elucidate a range of spiritual building projects. From Taiwan to South Carolina, from monasteries to mosques, the reader comes away with a humanistic awareness of the rich tapestry of spaces that house our most profound individual and collective identities." - Dana Cuff, Professor, Architecture and Urban Design, UCLA and Director, cityLAB-UCLA, USA

"The book is well illustrated with plenty of detailed drawing and colour photographs. It explores the special needs of sacred spaces; the need to incorporate the differing requirements of each faith, the local settings, local building rules and acceptable architecture, and yet still produce a harmounious building for those using it and those living nearby; and also the space itself need to be transcendent." - Building Engineer, Ray Needham FAIA FAA/FIPA FMAAT MWOBO

Table of Contents

Dedication Part 1: Introduction 1. Introduction 2. New Terms 3. Architectural History and Historiography 4. Architecture Construction of Identity Part 2: Churches 5. Arcari + Iovino Architects 6. hMa (Hanrahan Meyers Architects) 7. Kris Yao Artech 8. Makespace Architects 9. OOPEAA (Office for Peripheral Architecture) Part 3: Reconceptualizing Space 10. Conceptualizing Space 11. Geography and Space 12. Archaeology and Space Part 4: Monasteries 13. Michael Rotondi Architects 14. Kris Yao Artech Part 5: The Construction of Religious Spaces 15. Constructing Religious Space 16. Symbols and Space 17. Project Sites Part 6: Retreats 18. hMa 19. Imbue Design 20. Michael Rotondi Architects Part 7: Understanding Religions Through Architecture 21. Religious Traditions, an Overview in Architecture 22. Buddhism 23. Christianity 24. Islam 25. Judaism Part 8: Biographies and Observations 26. Arcari + Iovino Architects, Edward Arcari and Anthony Iovino 27. hMa, Victoria Meyers 28. Imbue Design, Hunter Gunderson, Matthew Swindel and Christopher Talvy 29. Makespace Architects, Shahed Saleem 30. OOPEAA, Anssi Lassila 31. Roto Architects, Michael Rotondi Acknowledgments Bibliography Index

About the Author

Sherin Wing received her Ph.D. in the Humanities from UCLA, USA. In addition to being a published scholar, she also writes for several publications including Architecture Magazine,, the Huffington Post, and Metropolis Magazine on a wide range of issues surrounding the cultural, economic, and social aspects of architecture.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
ARCHITECTURE / Design, Drafting, Drawing & Presentation
ARCHITECTURE / Buildings / Religious
RELIGION / General