Sunday, December 5, 2010

Chartres Cathedral

The doorways of the Chartres Cathedral in France mirror the walls of the Dome of the Rock, not in shape or material, but in the great detail featured on them. Praising the majesty of Christ and depicting stories from the Bible, these portals arrest visitors before they even enter, just as the tiled exterior of the Dome of the Rock. With its two towering spires, the same awe summoned at the sight of the vertical greatness of the pagoda is echoed here as well. With around 176 stain glass windows, three of which are large rose windows, the church is simultaneously illuminated by sunlight and the familiar sights of Biblical figures and stories. One entering into this space is not only amazed by the height and expanse of this place of worship but also at the artistry that composes the many beautiful elements of it. Like the Buddhist temple and the Islamic Mosque, this Cathedral utilizes its radical departure from the normal architecture that surrounds it to provoke reverence and awe its faithful attendants. 

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