Icelandic Rock Project,
Architectural rendering by Alex Hogrefe,
Conceived in 2016,
© Visualising Architecture Website
Whoever hears me builds his house on a rock
Jesus said to his disciples:
‘There is no sound tree that produces rotten fruit, nor again a rotten tree that produces sound fruit. For every tree can be told by its own fruit: people do not pick figs from thorns, nor gather grapes from brambles. A good man draws what is good from the store of goodness in his heart; a bad man draws what is bad from the store of badness. For a man’s words flow out of what fills his heart.
‘Why do you call me, “Lord, Lord” and not do what I say?
‘Everyone who comes to me and listens to my words and acts on them – I will show you what he is like. He is like the man who when he built his house dug, and dug deep, and laid the foundations on rock; when the river was in flood it bore down on that house but could not shake it, it was so well built. But the one who listens and does nothing is like the man who built his house on soil, with no foundations: as soon as the river bore down on it, it collapsed; and what a ruin that house became!’
Reflection on the architect's digital drawing
'Whoever hears me builds his house on a rock' says Jesus in today's Gospel reading. Architectural visualiser Alex Hogrefe has imagined a stunning concrete house built not just on a rock, but in a rock. The house, cut into the edge of a remote clifftop in Iceland, is virtual, and hasn't actually been built yet. Yet the plans and renderings are very realistic and using the latest visualisation technology. Beyond showing clients actual architectural plans, Alex shows his clients these highly visual renderings of what the finished house might look like. He conceived this house as a retreat, a place of escape, with private overnight rooms for visitors, meditation spaces and access to the stark surrounding natural landscape. Although Alex trained as an architect, he now works as an architectural rendering artist… an art form in itself.
Throughout his pontificate, Pope Francis has been encouraging us to be people of discernment, who know how to identify, through prayer, what our mission is in life. Today's reading holds a major key in order to help us with that: what fruit does each of our choices produce? This is ultimately the main discernment we are all invited to. And this discernment should prompt us to build good foundations for our spiritual lives.
The foundations of a building such as the one illustrated here, are often its least recognised feature, usually hidden and seemingly insignificant. Yet, they hold the building upright. But even once the building is built on a rock and has solid foundations, these buildings, however strong, need repair and maintenance… the maintenance by prayer to feed a rock-solid spiritual life…
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