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Videos reflect college’s work on ‘Living Chapel’


A pair of YouTube videos adds perspective to the Living Chapel, an international gift that seamlessly melds architecture, botany, theology, sustainability and music – with a vital assist from Penn College welding faculty and students. The first, produced by Gillean Denny, chief architectural designer of the “enormous jigsaw puzzle,” includes footage from the college’s welding labs and on-screen input from James N. Colton II, assistant professor of welding. “The music can be continuously adapted and reimagined,” Denny says, commenting on just one of the project’s stunning features: water-fed instrumentation that accents its natural artistry. “Just like the Living Chapel design itself, it should never be finished,” she says. “The design is alive. And I think that is the most important thing.”

A second video, provided by the Botanical Garden of Rome and presented in Italian, offers an overview of the entire process. Among the principals interviewed is Fabio Attorre, the garden’s director, who talks of the focus required to complete the project contemporaneous to a pandemic. During “a moment so difficult for our country,” he says, “we managed to bring home this beautiful structure.”

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