Designing Sacred Spaces

Cathedrals Poster

Objective Design a series of posters that advertise a three-part lecture on a specific architectural topic of your choice. Create hand-made letterforms to use for the main imagery of the posters.

Concept The three Designing Sacred Spaces posters advertise a lecture series on the architecture of religious buildings. Each of the lectures presents a different style of religious architecture: cathedrals, mosques and Buddhist or Hindu temples. The lectures take place on the Stanford University campus at Memorial Church.

Three words used in the prayer or meditation rituals in each religion are used to represent the different styles of religious architecture. Each word is made out of an appropriate material—“Amen” is formed in stained glass, “Om” is cut from wood, and “Allahu Akbar” is part of a tile mosaic.

Visuals Deep, saturated colors and highly detailed imagery evoke traditional religious architecture. Each of the posters features a photograph of the associated word of prayer. A column on the left of each poster presents a vector illustration of the design that seamlessly connects with the photograph. The juxtaposition of photograph and design brings focus to the ideas of blueprints and construction.

Most of the text is set in Univers, using its clean, well-constructed sans serif letterforms and extensive collection of alternate weights. The poster title is set in the geometric and distinctive typeface Pullman. The text is arranged together in a structured group, with strict columns and extreme variations in leading that provide visual contrast and give a sense of building blocks.

Three Posters
Mosques Mosques
Cathedrals Temples