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St Mark`s church

St Mark`s church of Björkhagen differs completely from other buildings of that time (1958-1960) as far as methods and systems of design are concerned. It stands in a place all its own within contemporary Swedish architecture.

Markuskyrkan i Björkhagen.

As a style, as well as in individual buildings, modern architecture is known as being rather anonymous, mirroring recognized ideas of its time. St Mark's is not of a genre in that aspect. It could not be moved to another location or be translated into another material. Every detail in the church was composed for its site. It speaks to us with soft and personal undertones. It makes people listen.

St Mark's church looks as if it has grown out of the ground; low and resting, with sound and simple massing. The colour palette was determined by the white birch trees of the site.

What the architect sought was contrast. He found it in the dark red bricks he had already used forty years earlier; a kind of brick then often used for monumental buildings but later almost forgotten. All details were based on the implications of brick construction. Not even one single brick should be cut. Joints should be varied to make the overall wall measurements work out.

The hand of the bricklayers were used to create vivid surfaces.
Joints were only roughly struck with a piece of wood. Lewerentz was recollecting old Persian architecture. And the ideas took often part or changed during the construction.

The church was consecrated 8th of may 1960 by Bishop Helge Ljungberg.