A visit to Fountains Abbey in the aftermath of lockdown

The studio has been involved with Cistercian and Benedictine monastic communities for over two decades. As part of their final solemn vows, brothers from both Orders make a promise of stability — a commitment to remain in a particular monastery. Sustained architectural collaboration has provided privileged insights into the nature of this undertaking. As we begin to reflect on a period of enforced confinement experienced by entire populations, it is with some new perspectives on the reality of isolation — on both its stresses and its freedoms.


John Pawson