Chapel at the University of Navarre Clinic

Featured Works: Madrid - Spain
General/Entrada
Anteoratorio
Presbiterio
Relieves
Sacristía
Nave
Metalwork
montaje cun

Good design

cannot be limited to isolated liturgical and devotional elements but should aim to consider the space as a whole and aim to achieve cohesion of all elements. This general harmony does not include only the aesthetic and the functional spheres but should also fulfill a more significant role; it should enhance and honor the Eucharistic celebration. Accordingly, in this project for a hospital chapel, we considered the interior architecture and created a continuum between the space and custom designed furnishings without neglecting an iconographic program, in this case focused on different expressions of Charity. The design was conceived from an end-to-end perspective, in addition to the interior architecture, the liturgical, devotional and furniture elements we also custom designed equipment of the sacristy.

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The Process of Sculptural Reliefs

The style of the reliefs is inspired by the Italian Baroque. In them, we also recovered the alabaster carving, a technique with a long tradition in Spain, highly appreciated for its beauty and the extraordinary warmth of the material. The execution process starts with an initial freehand sketch. From these drawings, the relief is modeled in clay, thus giving volume to the image. We used these original models as a reference to sculpt the final reliefs in the alabaster blocks, which take on nuances and life in their final finish. After completion, the large and fragile alabaster blocks were then carefully transported and assembled into the altarpiece in their new site.

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Separated

is separated from the nave by a wall with glass doors, welcoming the worshippers and serving as a transition between the mundane sphere and the sacred space they are about to enter. The walls of this area are covered with stained wooden boards,with the exception of the wall facing the altar. This wall is laid in pearl-gray marble on which a large wooden cross is hung. Entrance to the confessional is also located in this space.

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The sanctuary

is differentiated from other areas of the chapel with increased ceiling height as well as special materials used for its decoration. This area is clad in Roman Travertine marble with enclosed blockwork, the same stone that was used to carve the altarpiece. The altar and the ambo stand out against the light color of the surrounding marble; these elements are covered in dark Travertine from the same block. The eight foot long altar mensa is carved from a single block of stone. The area for the celebrant priest is delineated by a dark floor inlaid rectangular frame. The priest’s chair is located on the other side of the altar. Above it, and under the relief representing charitable works of St. Josemaría, the founder of the University of Navarre, a reliquary of the Saint has also been installed.

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The altarpiece

is divided into three sections, following traditional practice, with emphasis on the central segment. Masonry elements are made of Roman Travertine open marble blockwork, with a rubbed, continued smooth finish. The reliefs that compose the triptych are carved in alabaster. Since we have always worked with renowned sculptors at GRANDA, we continued with this custom for this project as well, and we invited and collaborated with Mr. Cody Swanson. Through his designs, modeling, and sculpting techniques Mr. Swanson brought to life to the iconographic program we had envisaged for the altarpiece. From the left, the triptych begins with the scene of The Visitation, focusing on maternity, which is also one of the important specializations of the Clinic. This section shows the charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary as a mediatrix between humanity and her Son, the hidden protagonist of this episode. The Virgin proclaims the Magnificat before St. Elizabeth and thus expresses happiness of those who have entrusted themselves to God’s will. Mary’s gesture and hymn show that path to happiness lies in trusting Providence in both joys and sorrows of life and finding deeper meaning in contradictions and suffering. The Visitation also shows the Virgin Mary listening attentively to God, but also to those in the world, symbolized by Elizabeth. This mission and expression of Charity is the theme of the relief on the right which depicts the visits that the young St. Josemaría Escriva made to the sick at the Hospital del Rey in Madrid. In the right corner of that image there is a vase of flowers symbolizing suffering and prayers that the hospitalized offer to God. The iconographic program of the triptych is completed with the central relief which depicts charity in its maximum expression - the Holy Trinity. In the same relief we find a depiction of the Holy Family which is an image of the Holy Trinity on earth, a theological insight developed by St. Josemaría Escriva.

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The Process of Sculptural Reliefs

The style of the reliefs is inspired by the Italian Baroque. In them, we also recovered the alabaster carving, a technique with a long tradition in Spain, highly appreciated for its beauty and the extraordinary warmth of the material. The execution process starts with an initial freehand sketch. From these drawings, the relief is modeled in clay, thus giving volume to the image. We used these original models as a reference to sculpt the final reliefs in the alabaster blocks, which take on nuances and life in their final finish. After completion, the large and fragile alabaster blocks were then carefully transported and assembled into the altarpiece in their new site.

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The door

to the sacristy is located discreetly to the right of the sanctuary, thus facilitating easy access for priests and servers. The sacristy space was designed with great care.Its layout and furniture accommodate movements and actions required for the preparation for the Holy Mass as well as practical care for the liturgical ornaments and objects.

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Tha nave

The entire floor is made of polished marble with some sections emphasized in such a way so as to establish appropriate liturgical directionality and highlight a line leading directly to the altar. We also lowered some sections of the ceiling, to achieve greater height above the centralaisle with the view of emphasizing the sanctuary area. The tabernacle is located behind the altar on an elevated pedestal, in the center of the sanctuary. Both the tabernacle and the altar are visually central.

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The place

reserved for the tabernacle is an open niche in the altarpiece, slightly elevated for visibility, and located centrally under the principal relief. The tabernacle is illuminated and can be accessed through ambulatory. It is carved of the same marble as the altarpiece and enriched with painted enamel representing Christ Pantocrator with the Tetramorph on the front and the Mystical Lamb on the door in the back. The sanctuary lamps are embedded in rectangular niches on both sides of the altarpiece with the tabernacle in the center. The lamps supported by a simple bracket crafted in the same marble as the altarpiece.

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Are you interested in this project?

At Granda we seek to encourage devotion. Personalizing each piece and giving unity to all the elements helps to inculturation, to transmit the message and to move the devotion of the faithful.

If you are interested in restoring a piece, creating new ones or carrying out an integral project, fill in the form indicating your preferences and we will call you within 48 hours.

Contact us

    C/ Galileo Galilei, 19.
    28806, Alcalá de Henares,
    Madrid. España
    info@granda.com
    (+34) 91 802 36 55

    Serving the Church since 1891

    Serving the Church since 1891

    C/ Galileo Galilei, 19.
    28806, Alcalá de Henares,
    Madrid. España
    info@granda.com
    (+34) 91 802 36 55

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