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Giardino Della Pace

PBeB Paolo Belloni Architetti as Architects

The "Garden of Peace" is a place of meditation and approach, resting and preparing for the meeting with the crypt "Obedentia et Pax" and the statue of Giovanni XXIII that welcomes pilgrims.

It 'a cloister, a place of silence characterized by the relationship with nature and with the open space.

The "Garden of Peace" is bounded by a rhythmic sequence of high iron profiles. Three hundred and thirty rods of iron spanning the space, it control the size and mark the distinction between what is inside and the outside world. The design of the walkway welcomes the pilgrim and it tightens around the church and the Chapel of Peace to lead inside the crypt, which is the heart of this place.

The stems are strong elements in iron and severe that bend sinuously softened by the wind of the spirit, by the wind of the council that puts in question the rigid austerity and humanizes them.

A perimetral walkway leading up to the new entrance to the crypt. The floor of this trench is made with a plurality of stones from various sources. These stones, which are traversed daily by pilgrims represent the plurality of cultures and peoples. That participation of different cultures to the realization of the joint project of peace, which is the main message of ecumenical dialogue and Intercultural widely sought by Pope Giovanni XXIII in the course of his life. The diversity of cultures as well as that of the stones is opportunity for enrichment.

Along the way six phrases remind the most important moments in the life of Giovanni XXIII. The phrases are engraved in slabs of Corten steel recessed into the floor. The Pilgrim along the trench intercepts lingers for a short reading and resumes its path toward Crypt. Other dates with brief notes punctuate the biography of JXXIII in the course of its 82 years of life. Although these dates are engraved in slabs iron embedded in the floor. In correspondence with the phrase that marks each of the six key moments in the life of Giovanni XXIII, one of the stems back an inscription that marks the vertical side of the iron.

Inside the patterns that characterize the walkway are placed "carpet of stone" made of stones from the places significant biography of Giovanni XXIII. The Pilgrim walking paths will tread the same places by Giovanni XXIII, it will be a way to physically retrace the steps of his experience. These portions of pavement will be physically "transplanted" by portions of the road and original places, where will be exported will be placed in a portion of the pavement "stone of Sotto il Monte" and a plaque will remember the event, I think a physical link, a bridge between Sotto il Monte and places of Giovanni XXIII. These patterns are mainly concentrated in the square paved entrance to the crypt.

The entrance to the crypt is a structure with low horizontal development that communicates in a discreet way with the architectural complex above: the church, the Chapel of Peace, the churchyard and the imposing bell tower. This structure "opens" the facade and the roof bending the three surfaces that characterize it, inviting entrance. A bas-relief treatment at negative recalls the richness of the "decorations" of the pope, who are made with materials of everyday people to remember the closeness of Giovanni XXIII to the common life.

In the central space of the Peace garden is a statue of Giovanni XXIII in chalk which is the original cast of the heavy in the yard input of the seminary of the city and created by sculptor Locatelli. The statue of the "Good Pope" which welcomes the pilgrims to "open arms" is protected by a case in reinforced concrete decorated realized as a small chapel open a protected place for a further moment of prayer. The exterior of the case is more severe and austere made of concrete treated to recall the colors of the stone local and ancient architecture in the overhanging hill of San Giovanni. The whole is instead characterized by polygonal geometries that resemble those that the pilgrim finds himself at the entrance and inside the crypt. The surface has a treatment in low relief in negative with golden stars.

Near the case there is a portion of flooring made from railway sleepers from the track ( a track of station in Milan from which the departed deported to the holocaust camps) recalls the commitment of Giovanni XXIII to save the lives of 24,000 Jews during his Nunciature in Turkey. A ramp linking the garden of peace and the churchyard is the occasion for a moment processional. Here, too, the surfaces are been treated to remember the colors of local materials.

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Playa de San Juan, Alicante, Spain - Build completed in 2020
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