The Christ Pavilion of Christian religions was created for Expo 2000 in Hanover, Germany, and it uses a unique marble-and-glass panel system for the walls. The material was supplied by Naxos Marble, S.A. of Greece.


The Christ Pavilion of Christian religions, a combined contribution of the Catholic and Protestant Churches for Expo 2000 in Hanover, Germany, is intended to be a contemplative counterpart to the vanity fair with architectural highlights. It was designed by Meinhard von Gerkan (Von Gerkan, Marg und Partner) and Joachim Zais with a plan that is “simple in structure, reduced to a few materials, precise in detail and unmistakable in its appearance and spatial atmosphere.” One of the signature elements in this plan was the use of marble from Greece, used in an innovative application with glass panels.

“Surfaces of thinly cut marble, laminated with glass, form a light-transmissive envelope, its lively colors creating a spatial atmosphere,” stated the architects for the project.

“The architecture of the Pavilion is restricted to the clear presentation of the modular construction and its details,” stated the architects. “The surrounding cloister, 4 meters wide [13 feet] and 6.8 meters high [22 feet], frames the overall complex and simultaneously functions as an exhibition space. In the north, the cloister comprises a voluminous hall 21 meters square [approximately 225 square feet] and 18 meters high [almost 60 feet], with its roof supported by nine slender cross-formed steel columns. Lighting and strong verticality grant the hall its dignity and solemnity.”

The marble-and-glass panels are 1.7 x 1.7 m (roughly 5.5 x 5.5 feet) in size with a thickness of 1.2 cm (½ inch).

The marble-and-glass panels are used for the walls throughout the pavilion, and they serve to enhance the open feeling of the space and meet several design goals that were set by the architects. “The spatial atmosphere of all areas is created by a modulation of light. The ‘Christ Hall’ receives light from top-lights centrally located above the column heads, emphasizing the vertical quality of the slender columns,” stated the architects. “The surrounding surfaces of thinly cut marble, laminated with glass, form a light-transmissive envelope, its lively colors creating a spatial atmosphere.”

Overall, Naxos Marble, S.A. supplied over 2,000 square meters (21,500 square feet) of material for the project.

The marble was provided by Naxos Marble, S.A. of Greece. “The marble-and-glass panels, which used Naxos marble, were produced and supplied by Wender und Selders GmbH,” explained Massimo Panduro, export manager for Naxos Marble, S.A. “We produced and supplied the cut-to-size Naxos marble to Wender und Selders.” The panels were 1.7 x 1.7 m (roughly 5.5 x 5.5 feet) in size with a thickness of 1.2 cm (½ inch). Overall, Naxos Marble, S.A. supplied over 2,000 square meters (21,500 square feet) of material for the project.

The marble-and-glass panels can be appreciated both inside and outside the structure.

The white marble also serves to contrast some of the “darker” materials used elsewhere. “Spatial ‘enclaves’ are located in the transmission between ‘Christ Hall’ and the cloister as ‘Rooms of Silence,’ where themes of Christianity and the Church are communicated to the visitor in a semantic interpretation,” explained the architects. “Staircases lead to the underground ‘crypt.’ The walls are freely contoured with fair-faced concrete, and three of the large cross-formed steel columns are continued through from the expansive ceiling.

Since its completion, the project has won several awards, including the prestigious Fritz Schumacher Award for architecture. It also received a 2006 Marble Architectural Award from IMM Carrara.

The surrounding ‘cloister’ is equipped with a double glass facade, used as large-scale showcases. The space between is filled with materials of various origins: From nature with coal, rush, bamboo, wood strips, poppyheads, feathers, etc. From technology: toothed wheels, tea-strainers, hoses, lighters and one-way syringes. Depending on the filling, the walls are more or less translucent, partially also transparent; consequently the light atmosphere is modified and varies dramatically along the cloister.”

Since its completion, the project has won several awards, including the prestigious Fritz Schumacher Award for architecture. It also received a 2006 Marble Architectural Award from IMM Carrara.

Christ Pavilion
Hanover, Germany

Design: Meinhard von Gerkan (Von Gerkan, Marg und Partner, Germany) and Joachim Zais

Stone Supplier: Naxos Marble, S.A., Greece

Glass-and-Marble Panel Assembly: Wender und Selders GmbH, Germany