Apostolou Varnava and Agiou Makariou Church [Greek Orthodox Church of St. Barnabas the Apostle and St. Makarios]
Religious/centre of worship
Religious/centre of worship
Concrete by reinforcement
Concrete is a relatively brittle material that is strong in compression but less so in tension.
To increase its overall strength, steel rods, wires, mesh or cables may be embedded in concrete before it sets. This reinforcement, often known as rebar, resists tensile forces. By forming a strong bond, the two materials are able to resist a variety of applied forces, effectively acting as a single structural element .
In this case, the concrete can be made by mixing the components directly on site, or it may be transported from a production plant in concrete-mixer trucks.
This method has the disadvantage of leaving the concrete exposed to the elements while it is setting. Whereas, with other methods, the environmental conditions can be controlled during setting, providing greater control over the outcome, with cast-in-place concrete a series of tests and protocols are necessary to verify its final strength.
- textured walls
- wooden formwork finish
- stamped concrete
- exposed aggregate concrete, colored concrete, etc.
It is an archetypal form and one of the oldest forms in architecture, dating all the way back to prehistoric times. It is characterized by being subject only to compression loads, although it produces outward thrusts that need to be absorbed either through volume or geometric strategies (such as buttresses or flying buttresses). It is a typical structure used in tunnels.
The shape of the structure as a whole usually coincides with that of the building, as in the case of vaults or domes, for example.
Felix Candela and Pier Luigi Nervi both made exemplary use of this type of structure.
State of Conservation
Neoptolemos Michaelides is the undisputed leading figure of 20th-century Cypriot architecture. A popular character both in Cyprus and in Greece, his work is characterized by a poetic simplicity, coupled with an honest structural expressiveness; he worked almost exclusively with concrete.
This church brings together the best of his architecture. The simplicity of the forms is derived from a clear structural logic: a parabolic vault in exposed concrete – set using a very carefully constructed formwork – evokes both the archetypal forms of religious architecture and an emphatic modernity. The vault divides into arches as it comes into contact with the ground, generating two side naves that increase the width of the space.
The interior, which incorporates a careful treatment of natural light, has been disfigured by a series of subsequent interventions: today the vaults are completely covered with multicolored frescoes that prevent light from refracting. To compensate, the space was filled with large crystal chandeliers to provide artificial light, and the weightless appearance of the vaults has disappeared. These reforms drew energetic protests from the architectural community and the designer himself, but religious authorities did not respond.
On the outside, a series of concrete roofs, supported by pillars and arches, surround the building on both sides and on the front façade, acting as a narthex. The complex is rounded out with a stand-alone concrete bell tower in a truncated cone shape.
Nicosia 49RF+38 Strovolos
Fundación DOCOMOMO Ibérico