The Chapel in Oberrealta designed by Christian Kerez stands at the outermost edge of a high plateau above the Upper Rhine Valley in Cazis, Switzerland.
In shape, the chapel resembles a simple, ordinary house, but being made out of only one material, concrete, it is essentially a sculpture of an ordinary house, and therefore a monument. The chapel has no architectural details: it has no gable, no gutters, no door and no window frames. There is not even a path leading up to it. Its simplicity and modest dimensions heighten the drama and beauty of the surrounding mountains. The reduction and minimalism of the architecture is a direct response to the dramatic landscape.
The space inside the chapel precisely replicates its external concrete and symbolic appearance. The interior is defined by a crack of light, too narrow to afford a view of the valley opposite. The width of the wall cannot be deduced from the embrasure of the crack. Hence, the immaterial light of the opening acquires the character of a sign, without any need for symbolic architecture.