Erich-Mendel-Platz, 44791 Bochum
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Distance: 0.52 km
Distance: 0.65 km
Next to Stadtpark, we see the 17m tall synagogue cube on a platform enclosed by walls made of stacked exposed concrete. It makes for an exciting interplay with the metallically gleaming dome of the adjacent planetarium.
The three-part ensemble of buildings for the synagogue and the community centre is solid. Its facade is clad in natural stone from Israel and thus reminiscent of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.
As a very visible indication of the religious function of the building the Star of David was used as a facade ornament. A number of overlapping stars makes for a sort of tele-effect of this synagogue. The relief of protruding and retracted rows of stones reminds one of the locally typical brick expressionism.
Inside, the 17m x 17m large and 16m high hall is covered by a suspended dome. The benched, golden canopy has a diameter of 15m. It lends the room festivity and transcendence. In the dome’s crest, directly above the bema, the most important place in the synagogue, is an opening which lets zenith light into the room.
The prayer room opens up toward the east through large windows. Triangular openings break up the solid external walls in the north, east and south. They correspond with the facade relief and can be interpreted as a frieze consisting of Stars of David. The inside is in the main characterised by the Torah ark and the bema.
The ark is at the east wall facing Jerusalem. The bema is, literally, at the centre of the room. The circular rows of seats make for good concentration.
However, the synagogue is not only a religious building. It is also meeting point and community centre. Thus, foyer, community centre and synagogue form a spatial triad that can be used in various ways and allows various encounters and functions.
Auszeichnung guter Bauten 2010 (BDA Bochum), Auszeichnung
Author: Schmitz Achitekten / Editorial baukunst-nrw
Last changed on 10.11.2022