Beukenhof Auditorium and Crematorium

Schiedam, The Netherlands
The architecture of the Beukenhof Auditorium and Crematorium is a religious architecture, influenced by the powerful long history of churches and chapels to grand halls, temples and shrines where the notion of enfolding of diverse traditions and aesthetics all contribute to it's enigmatic physical presence and architectural elegance.

The meandering form of the sculptural exterior is purposely reflected within as smooth surfaces that delineate the spaces of movement and contemplation within. A delicate pattern of apertures in the roof creates interiors bathed in diffused and modulated light while the various sounds and the play of light produced by water flowing along the building surfaces and collecting in adjacent pools imbues the building with a powerful but serene atmosphere.

The Beukenhof Auditorium and Crematorium provides the city of Schiedam and its neighboring areas with a much-needed new and modern architectural approach to the need for such places of worship and repose. This new building is to be inserted into the city's urban fabric and lush environs as a cultural locus taking into consideration the abstract meanings and poetics of such a place of importance and pertinence to the people of Schiedam.

The approach to the architectural design is one that celebrates the meaning of such a building for the many diverse religions and cultures that will share this place. The architecture while addressing the unique traditions, rituals and sensibilities of the different faiths that the building will accommodates is also presented as a fluid and sensual sculptural presence that merges the buildings form with the natural and lush surroundings. The architecture is experienced while set against the elegant tree-lined canals and the serene landscape that sits alongside the building, where the building is effectively a poetic work that embraces both nature and life.
Project Information
Date: 2012

Size: 4,150 sqm

Location: Schiedam, The Netherlands

Design Team:

Architect: Asymptote Architecture

Design: Hani Rashid, Lise Anne Couture

Project Director: Josh Dannenberg

Design Team: Duho Choi, Oliver Dibrova, Brian Deluna

John Hsu, Chris Johnson, Susan Kim, Ryan Macyauski,

Penghan Wu, Shi Yun

Client: Piet Sanders Foundation, The Netherlands, Buekenhoff Schiedam

Awards: Architecture Magazine PA Award 2012