Hallgrímskirkja is the tallest structure in Reykjavik, and probably in all of Iceland . Designed by Guðjón Samúelsson in the 1940s, Hallgrímskirkja (hal-greem-s-keerk-ya, Hallgrim's Church) wears its volcanic symbolism on its skin: the 75 meter high steeple is flanked by concrete representations of the volcanic basalt columns that can be observed all around the country. Their gradation creates an irresistible effect of ascension that is a direct echo of most church architecture throughout history, the Gothic cathedrals in particular. Interestingly, volcanic basalt columns are commonly referred to as "organ pipes", so there we come a full circle – and the organ is right there inside the church, no less monumental or volcanic...


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