2023 Sacred Architecture Exhibit

2023 Sacred Architecture Exhibit

Fourth-year UVU Architecture students featured in the Roots of Knowledge Gallery

Class PhotoCalling all architecture enthusiasts and art aficionados! The talented fourth-year UVU architecture students in ARC 4110 have embarked on an inspiring journey with Prof. Brandon Ro to design sacred spaces for the Abrahamic religions, exploring the profound connection between architecture and spirituality. Come witness the future of sacred architecture as our UVU students unveil their awe-inspiring design proposals. The exhibition will be open for an entire week, allowing you to explore these breathtaking designs at your own pace.

Event Details:
Student Presentations:
Monday, November 27th
9:00 am - 4:30 pm

Exhibition Reception:
Monday, November 27th
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Monday, November 27th - December 3rd

Roots of Knowledge Bingham Gallery, Fulton Library, Utah Valley University, 800 W University Pkwy, Orem, UT 84058

Mark your calendars, invite your friends, and immerse yourself in the world of sacred architecture. Let's celebrate the power of beauty, transcendence, and creativity with the UVU architecture community!

Sacred Architecture Review Presentation  Student Work  Student Work  Student Work  Student Work


About the Exhibit

Sacred Spaces Unveiled: Exploring the Beauty of Ritual-Architectural Experience

An Exhibition of Architectural Drawings and Models from ARC 4110 – Architecture Design Studio V

Explore the transformative power of sacred spaces in an enlightening exhibit of architectural drawings and models by Utah Valley University (UVU) students. Discover how future architects are harnessing the power of design to elevate spaces from mere functionality to profound significance – making them hallmarks of culture, faith, and human experience. Witness how sacred architecture weaves the sensory and symbolic by bringing rituals to life. It's in these sacred spaces that the divine and the human converge to shape societies and civilizations like no other architectural form.

The heart of the exhibit lies in the “Design Challenge” where fourth-year architecture students were tasked with creating a sacred structure for one of the Abrahamic religions for sites in Midway and Heber, Utah. Under the guidance of their mentor Brandon Ro, AIA, NCARB, ICAA –  an award-winning architect and professor at UVU – students explore the intricate balance between idealistic visions of religious experience and practical constraints such as building science, codes, and materials. The works exhibited dive into what makes a space, monument, or building truly sacred by asking the following questions:

  • What is the overarching purpose of sacred architecture, and what is the role of the architect in producing inspiring places of worship?
  • How can an architect create a setting for ritual that expands a person’s sense of self, foster a sense of belonging, and transform human understanding?
  • Are there ways in which architecture can transcend geometric proportions and materials to evoke deep emotions of beauty, spirituality, contemplation, and the very essence of timelessness?
  • How can architects return to emphasizing the poetic and symbolic aspects of design so built forms, rituals, and participants can converge to create numinous and ineffable events?

As you explore the exhibit, embark on a journey to explore the spiritual and geometric aspects of sacred spaces and how they shape the human experience. "Space as Sacred" offers a deep dive into the rich tapestry of architectural history and its enduring impact on our world.

The student work presented in this exhibit was produced during the Fall 2023 semester. The course ARC 4110 – Architecture Design Studio V was taught by Assistant Professor Brandon Ro.

Works in the Exhibition

Student projects are listed alphabetically by last name. 

  • Almasjid Ealaa Altali: The Mosque on the Hill
    • Barrett Blake
  • Temple of Our Divine Journey: Progression to God
    • Jared Bradshaw
  • Cathedral of St. Benedict: Ora et Labora
    • Eric Burton
  • Heber Sunni Mosque: An Islamic Worship and Community Center
    • Jean-Claude Coomer
  • Islamic Center of Midway: Nurturing Faith and Community in the Foothills of Heber Valley
    • Thomas Cryer
  • Midway Satmar Synagogue: A Jewish Sanctuary in the Mountains
    • Sean Donner
  • Heber Valley Temple: Up to the Mountain 
    • Kevin Hart
  • Beth Sholom Midway: A House of Peace in the Mountains
    • Steven Hawker
  • Alpine Sanctuary: Connecting Heaven and Earth
    • Colton Korpi
  • The Shepherd's Mount: Gathering His People
    • Joseph Laudie
  • Heber Valley Temple: Look unto Me in every thought
    • Joshua Lythgoe
  • Resonant Reflections: Transforming Tradition in the Presbyterian Sanctuary
    • Kent Miller
  • Notre-Dame de Heber: Where Faith Touches Heaven
    • Yan-ho Ng
  • Cathedral of our Savior: A Reverent Ascent
    • Hailey Packard
  • Midway Utah Temple: Seeking God
    • Desiree Ritchie
  • Sheperd’s Gate Cathedral: Sanctuary of Peace and Purpose
    • Nathaniel Stucki
  • Holy Trinity Church: Welcome All Unto Christ
    • Alexia Trapier
  • Evangelische Reformierte Kirche: Swiss Reformation in Midway, Utah
    • Samuel Weisler
  • Beit HaKnesset HaSela: The Sacred Gem of the Wasatch Mountains 
    • Jake Wendt
  • That I May Dwell Among Them: A Second Temple for Heber
    • Samuel Zenteno

Design Awards Voting

Help us celebrate outstanding design created by Utah Valley University architecture students! Please take a moment to cast your vote for your favorite projects in the Sacred Architecture category. Your voice matters, and we value your choice. Thank you for being part of our survey!