The People's Notre-Dame Design Competition

Ryota Okada, Hitoshi Fujiita

Okafujiishi

Japan

Designer's Description

A part of the church of Notre Dame, a timeless and enduring structure, has disappeared after having been burnt to ashes.The beautiful Notre Dame Cathedral stood so powerful in the middle of Paris, though, through this incident we have reconfirmed the fragility and ephemerality of beauty itself.In rebuilding the roof, we propose a space of nothingness that is open to the public which symbolizes this ephemerality.In order to achieve this "ephemerality", we incorporated the use of sheep (sheep wool insulation material) and sunlight.We will be using sheep wool insulation material, a recycled waste product of sheep that is bred specifically for the production of clothing, as a material which symbolizes this ephemerality. When thinly pulling apart the sheep wool insulation, light is able to permeate through, creating a beautiful materiality.A part of the light becomes contained within the sheep wool insulation allowing the material to glow.The silhouette of the roof will be restored using a light frame, which the space is then enveloped by the sheep wool insulation, allowing light to fill the space.The sheep has been worshipped as a symbol of Christianity, also having been used as an offering to God. Meanwhile, sheep has been useful as livestock in everyday life of humans. The sheep carries with it a beautiful wool, and has enriched the lives of humanity while also evolving the desires of human beings.The human race has bred clothing specific sheep in order to acquire their beautiful wool.Over time, those sheep have evolved to grow relatively more beautiful wool, though sheep are inherently weak-natured and are unable to exist without this human intervention of trimming the wool.We feel that these sheep bred for clothing strongly symbolize this "ephemerality."The Notre Dame Cathedral will become a church in which 2 various characteristics of light exist.The solemn cathedral space welcomes its citizens and the rooftop space which wraps its citizens with the ever changing sunlight.This is a reconstruction project of an "ephemeral" and "beautiful" church that stands still within the beautiful landscape of Paris.

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