A half pipe for skateboarders? Rather, the giant masonry bowl at 19th Avenue and Clement Street is starchitect Stanley Saitowitz's latest project, a 15,000 square foot temple, Congregation Beth Sholom. Formed entirely of poured concrete, the bowl provides the sanctuary for Beth Sholom's 700 worshipers; the adjacent glass box will house the library, board room, lounge, meeting, and yoga/ meditation rooms.
Taking a cue from Libeskind's Contemporary Jewish Museum, Saitowitz has negotiated with Jewish law's prohibition against the use of iconography by employing windows and natural light as a means of decoration— for instance, a "shadow menorah" cast from six supporting roof beams splays across one wall, changing throughout the day as the sun moves. And here we thought he'd outdone himself with the pipes at Conduit.
· A bowl soars in the Richmond [SF Examiner]
[Renderings courtesy Stanley Saitowitz/ Natoma Architects Inc.]