Kent School, Girls' Chapel

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Kent School, Girls

Perspective Rendering

Drawings   98  browse all »

West Elevation - Boys Entrance
Chapel Framing Plan

Correspondence   56  browse all »


In 1967, the Kent School established a Girls’ School at the previously all-male institution and hired Breuer to design a chapel and campanile. The monumental square volume of the chapel was constructed of concrete and was very similar in form to the auditorium and assembly buildings Breuer designed for Interama at about the same time. The sheer walls tapered slightly as they moved upwards and were given sculptural interest by the projections for the organ niches, windows and doors. The interior featured a centrally placed-altar surrounded by pews on the ground floor and balcony levels. Intersecting diagonal beams spanned the ceiling creating decorative coffers and central lightwells. The plan also incorporated classroom and office spaces and featured separate entrances for male and female students. The chapel featured a separate sculptural campanile whose prominence reflected the importance of the bell ringing tradition on campus. The campanile’s concrete hyperbolic-parabaloid form was punctured by two holes in the twisting sculptural mass: the upper void contained the bells while the lower provided space for the ringers. Despite the compelling design produced by Breuer and his associate Robert Gatje, the school administration decided not to build the chapel, preferring to “spend the money on people not buildings.”