Maidstone Buddhist Cultural Centre
The Maidstone Cultural Centre is an empathetic response to both the site and the history of Vietnamese Buddhism in Victoria. Conceptually, it is part of three buildings (School, Cultural Centre and Meditation Centre) which plays on the core notions of the journey towards enlightenment in Buddhism culminating at the existing Temple space.
The cultural centre; inclusive of a cafe, stage and stupa, located at the top of the valley is nestled in the trees and surrounding landscape. Designed to symbolise the Buddha’s experience of enlightment, the stupa is created to stem from the ground through rammed earth walls and grows lighter with timber construction where a sky garden becomes the base for the lightweight pinnacle structure. There is also a strong sense sustainability and earth regeneration infused into design, which are important values to the community.
Manipulation and introduction of light to such an enclosed and dark space through highlight windows and a central light core creates a strong ambience of the “sacred”.
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