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  • Cristo Obrero Church - Eladio Dieste

    Location: Atlantida, Uruguay
    Designed and built by Ing. Eladio Dieste
    Designed in 1950 built in 1956.

    How to get there:

    It is located at 35km from the airport of Montevideo, so you can either take a bus (companies COPSA or COT) to Atlantida, or rent a car.
    (call me with some time, I'll be happy to drive you, but beers are on you!)

    As soon as you get to the entrance of Atlantida, (there is a loop) you should take left, that is in the opposite direction of the city, toward the north.
    You drive/ walk for 4 km approx, and there it is, right on the road (national road N 11).
    Attached Files
    Last edited by primocordara; 07-02-2006, 18:31.

  • #2
    The facade is a separate structure that never meets the side walls or the roof.
    The undulating brick wall below supports the choir and the front windows.

    Notice the separate entrance to the underground baptism place located under the circular flowers and illuminated by the round central volume closed by a slab of onyx.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by primocordara; 07-02-2006, 18:32.

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    • #3
      On the side you notice the undulated side walls that support the roof.
      I will try to show pictures of details not generally seen in the mags, Shulman already made a good job with those shots!
      Notice the "Campanile" to the right
      Attached Files
      Last edited by primocordara; 07-02-2006, 18:32.

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      • #4
        Inside the bell tower. An elicoidal stair of cantilevered steps... made with bricks!! iron rods between the bricks provide structural strength.
        Attached Files
        Last edited by primocordara; 07-02-2006, 18:33.

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        • #5
          All the way round from the rear. This protuding volume is a little space to the left of the altar inside. A thin slab of white alabaster closes it and lets light inside.
          Attached Files
          Last edited by primocordara; 06-02-2006, 10:44.

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          • #6
            This is as seen from inside... not a good picture, sorry
            Notice that all bricks were individualy cut to give perspective efect to the joints!
            Attached Files
            Last edited by primocordara; 07-02-2006, 18:34.

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            • #7
              Now let's go inside. The church is small, very cool ( 32 c degrees outside!)
              The presence of god given by light effects, the humble location of the altar were all part of the "revolution" that took place in the church in the early 60s, so this was a revolutionary church in the way it interpreted Christian's as well.

              The altar is a solid block of granite polished only on top (must be 1 ton at least!).

              Of course Christians cannot live without icons (I am too, but don't think Dieste meant these statues to be there), so they placed some statues directly were the sun ray comes in (notice the small skylight above).
              This was 11am Sunday , so my guess is this ray must fall over the altar some time closer to midday (well, not all the year).
              (I don't mean the Yepes Christ, intended to be there by Dieste, but a Mary statue to the right were the rays fall, it is so illuminated that you cant almost see it in the picture!)
              Attached Files
              Last edited by primocordara; 07-02-2006, 18:36.

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              • #8
                A view from the choir. To the right of the altar is a small deposit.
                Notice how light comes in from behind the altar and is reflected in walls and ceiling. There is absolutely no artificial light here...
                Attached Files

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                • #9
                  Here a view of the choir. There are alabaster slabs between the brick planes to the right. They are only one brick thick, with thin iron rods inside the mortar between them...
                  Attached Files
                  Last edited by primocordara; 06-02-2006, 10:47.

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                  • #10
                    A view towards the choir. Notice the separation of the facade to the side walls and the roof.
                    the efect of the light on the bricks is magical!
                    Attached Files

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                    • #11
                      A closer look at the altar lets you notice the way the bricks are layered behind it, placed with one vertex protruding, a wonderfully pattern.
                      The Christ and crucifix are by Yepes.
                      he says he wanted a more raw block of granite...

                      He also "forced" the priest to walk around the altar and step into it "in the humble way it SHOULD BE" in stead of "appearing onstage like a magic puppet from behind"
                      Attached Files
                      Last edited by primocordara; 07-02-2006, 18:37.

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                      • #12
                        A view from the door, the flowers above the dome toped with the circular onyx slab and the entrance of the Baptism underground.
                        Unfortunately it was closed, I think flooded!
                        Notice the floor is also made with bricks
                        Attached Files
                        Last edited by primocordara; 07-02-2006, 18:38.

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                        • #13
                          The last one. below the choir are the "confessionals"(?), which evidently are abandoned. Confession was very strict before the reforms in 1962, now it is almost a lost tradition...
                          Hope you liked these, you can check the Eladio Dieste thread for the plans and sections of this church, and more "magazine" pictures...
                          Attached Files
                          Last edited by primocordara; 07-02-2006, 18:39.

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                          • #14
                            Magnificent & Humbling

                            Thank You Primo for making the special visit

                            Do you have any knowledge of the man himself ?

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                            • #15
                              where is the kmz???

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