Germany's Pilgrimage Church by Architect Gottfried Bohm

Gottfried böhm, pilgrimage church, neviges 1963-1972
Gottfried böhm, pilgrimage church, neviges 1963-1972 (Photo credit: Flickr upload bot)

Architect Gottfried Bohm was born in Germany in 1920. He studied at the Munich Technisch Hochschule and graduated in 1946. He then went on to study sculpture at the Munich Academy of Fine Arts. He took over his father's firm upon the elder Bohm's death in 1955. Gottfried has become a respected and award winning Architect.

Gottfried böhm, pilgrimage church, neviges 1963-1972 - 02
Gottfried böhm, pilgrimage church, neviges 1963-1972 - 02 (Photo credit: Flickr upload bot)

The Pilgrimage Church by Gottfried Bohm was opened in 1962 in Neviges Germany. The expressionist style and concrete material mixed together to form a fascinating architectural wonder. It rises out of the hillside like a giant sphinx. The odd angles and shapes create a myriad of effects as light conditions change throughout the day. The design works with the hillside lot. The architecture and landscaping combine to create a majestic entryway up to the doors. The graduate walkway anchors the building into the hillside. It also provides the focal point of the landscaping.

gottfried böhm, architect: maria königin des friedens pilgrimage church, neviges, germany 1963-1972
gottfried böhm, architect: maria königin des friedens pilgrimage church, neviges, germany 1963-1972 (Photo credit: seier+seier)

The inside is just as lovely as the outside. There is a large central sanctuary. The room is huge with high ceilings and rows of pews. Surrounding the sanctuary is a system of hallways and stairs capable of moving large numbers of people quickly through and out of the building. Yet, scattered around the second floor are areas appropriate for small groups or individual worshippers to get away from the crowd. These intimate spaces offer excellent views of the open hall below. Spaces will accommodate from one to eight people. There are various rooms within the structure that offer unusual shapes and window spaces.

Gottfried böhm, pilgrimage church, neviges 1963-1972 - 03
Gottfried böhm, pilgrimage church, neviges 1963-1972 - 03 (Photo credit: Flickr upload bot)

A visitor to the Pilgrimage Church is worth a traveler's time. The church has lots to offer. Standing at the bottom of the lot and looking up the pathway toward the church is breathtaking. The church has none of the common attributes that mark it as a religious structure. The expressionistic lines can hold the attention of a visitor for an indefinite period of time. Photography opportunities abound so make sure the camera battery is recharged and ready to go.

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