Published on February 17, 2014 | by Yasemin Erguder0
CSM’s new prayer room to open in MarchCentral Saint Martin’s staff and students are preparing for the opening of the ‘quiet capsule’ project, a room dedicated to student relaxation.
The college’s previous prayer room was situated in the basement of CSM below a toilet, in a small room with no windows, and was described as “unfit for use” by SUARTS President Shelly Asquith.
After over a year of consultation and work, the new quiet room is ready.
SUARTS culture and diversity officer Mostafa Rajaai told ALN: “Out of [all] the prayer rooms around our other colleges such as LCC, High Holborn, Chelsea, Camberwell and others, CSM was the most difficult one to get done, which the students designed themselves.”
Last year a group of four students won a competition to design the quiet room – including its concept, material, and architecture. The team of students consisted of Previn Naidoo and Jordan Cottage, from BA Architecture Spaces and Objects, as well as Catherine Bella and Luca Ponticelli, from MA Narrative Environments.
Geoffrey Makstutis, the course leader of BA Architecture: Spaces and Objects, said: “The project is going very well. In fact, it is ready for use and students have access to it.
“There are some additional features that we would like to add, and these will be integrated over the coming weeks. The aim is to have a formal launch in March, when the various quiet spaces across UAL will be formally announced,” Makstutis said.
He added: “The effort from students, academic staff, administration and facilities teams is a real testament to how much the college is committed to providing space for individual prayer, meditation and reflection.”
Ponticelli explained: “I have done the material, visual identity and the story boarding and we [are] still missing flooring and furniture. However, even with all the struggling we had, I am glad in the end.”
According to Ponticelli, the space is a monolithic structure that gives a person the feeling of protection by offering students security and a place to practice their belief in peace.