Santa María del Mar

Santa María del Mar


The 1790’s Neoclassical Chapel (made by Francesc Vila) is located at the back of the Basilica’s apse. It experienced a descent in activity which led it to be used as a storage unit in present times. 

Fortunately the new administration decided to reactivate its original use by commissioning the space, looking for a fresh and attractive intervention for visitors and the congregation. 

The Chapel’s apse remains as a small storage unit blocked by a purple separation wall, allowing the rest of the space to adapt into a new radial configuration as opposed to the original linear one.

The minimalistic approach searches to contrast the dense decoration of the neoclassical style against a clean textile mesh lit from the bottom up to create a mystic yet contemporary ambiance of transparencies.

The wrapping of the mesh circles around the internal perimeter, enclosing a central table which also serves as an altar. The furniture is composed of a prefabricated cross, tabernacle and podium made out of brass, recycled acrylic, tubular frames, wood and lighting fixtures. The materials offer a remembrance for precious relics and sacred artifacts, plus the levity of a holy space.

All elements are demountable if necessary in the future, meaning the intervention is harmless to the existing building by being retractable.


Project:  Chapel of the most holy inside Santa MAría del Mar Basilica

Type: Adaptive Reuse

Site: Barcelona, Spain

Client: Salvador Pié

Year: 2021

Area: 130m2

Status: Completed

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