Pecherkapelle Hernstein

Jutta Woertl-Goessler

Chapel of Saint Vinzenz
To commemorate the last resin workers in the black pine forests south of Vienna, a competition was launched by the Governement of Lower Austria. The winning project was designed by the architect Jutta Wörtl-Gössler with the sculpturer Luka Arafune, and the artist Hans Wörtl. The chapel was built from black pine wood with the help of the people of Hernstein.
By studying the surroundings and the process of tree gum extracting relevant elements were woven into the architecture, such as resin chip and harvesting ladder. The narrow entrance refers to prehistoric graves in the neighborhood in it´s function of a rebirth gap. The only vertical beam within the construction bears a small cross, symbol of christianity. The word “PIX” (lat. for resin), embedded in the floor covering, mutates into the word “PAX” (lat. for peace) through A-shape of the chapel: Peace to resin works. The floor of the triangular raw concrete base made by locals is covered with natural stone (slate). The pine wood for the hyperbolic paraboloid (warped) construction was harvested and donated by the poeple of Hernstein. A local carpenter supervised the building process. The western side of the chapel is made of horizontal planks turning around an inclined plain in the east showing a huge face. The chapel opens to the black pine forrest.
Artistic concept
30 colorful glass panels designed by the artist Hans Wörtl show Saint Vinzenz, patron of resin work. The artist met the last living resin workers, took their pictures and overlaped them. The emerging „portrait“ of the Saint is to be seen in the thefts of the raisin workers faces, withered by nature.

Planning partners: Ruka Arafune, Hans Wörtl

Client: Gemeinde Hernstein und Kunst im öffentlichen Raum, Niederösterreich

Category: Art and Culture

Project Gallery

Ostseite.jpg, © Wolfgang Thaler, Photographer: Wolfgang Thaler
Nordansicht.jpg, © Wolfgang Thaler, Photographer: Wolfgang Thaler
Interior.jpg, © Wolfgang Thaler, Photographer: Wolfgang Thaler