The architect of the Belarusian church Tszwai So was named by the journal of the Royal Institute of British Architects (UK) a Rising Star.
As well as the typical young practice fodder of small extensions, So has developed a fascination with Belarusian timber architecture. After he was commissioned to design the Belarusian Church in north London, to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, So spent a year researching the vernacular timber churches of Belarus. Convinced of timber’s importance as a building material in the country’s culture, he proposed a wooden form for the London site.
So used his research and an emotional appeal to convince locals and his clients. We have highlighted the project’s promise in the RIBA Journal and judge Lucy Tilley of Adjaye Associates was impressed with the detailing and craftsmanship in construction shots. For this year’s London Festival of Architecture So created an installation to draw attention to the moving experiences of Chernobyl.