Built in the early 1700s by Franciscan priests, Sant Francesc Convent in Santpedor, Spain, served its purpose until 1835, after which it was left to the devices of nature. A slow process of deterioration eventually led to a demolition in 2000. However, the church of Sant Francesc hadn’t fallen completely to the ground, and David Closes Arquitecte took on the project of converting what remained of the church into space usable by the surrounding community, including an auditorium and multifunction cultural facility.
By working with the existing structure, the architects did not override or undo the degraded state of the church itself but rather worked around it, allowing the “historical wounds” to remain while breathing new life into the church’s original interior space.
[quote] The intervention preserves the historical heritage of the building and simultaneously adds new values, which highlight and singularize the ancient church in a contemporary way … In the future, a final phase will complete the project by placing a historical archive on the upper floors of the south side of the church.” [/quote]