Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Foundation
- GROSS BUILDING FLOOR AREA (Approx.)
- COMPLETION YEAR
- DESIGN YEAR
When asked of what his vision for the future temple would be, Master Sheng Yen, the founder of the Monastery and Dharma Drum Buddhist Group, answered that he “sees” the temple in his meditation dhyana, “It is a Flower in Space, Moon in Water,” he said. “Let’s name it the Water-Moon Monastery”.
Thus began the Water-Moon Monastery. Situated on the vast Guandu plain, facing the Keelung River and with the Datun Mountain as its backdrop, the design takes advantage of its natural surroundings and strives to build a tranquil spiritual place.
After passing through two walls of different heights that serve as buffer from the expressway outside, upon entering the temple, visitors face the view of the shrine that sits at the far end of an 80-meter long lotus pond. The reflections on the pond of the over-sized colonnades and the flowing golden drapes in between create a scene of illusory quality. Using architectural concrete as the main material, the design reduces the color and form to a minimum, conveying the spirit of Zen Buddhism. The lower part of the shrine is transparent, giving it an impression of its upper wooden “box” being suspended in the air.
On the west side of the shrine, a massive wooden wall is carved with the famous “Heart Sutra” in Chinese characters. As the lights shine through the carved-out characters, the space is infused with an aura of culture and spirituality. Outside the long corridor, the characters of the “Vajracchedika Prajnaparamita Sutra” are cast void on the prefabricated GRC panels, providing additional religious meaning while functioning as sunshades. When the scripture is imprinted onto the interior surface by the sunlight, it is as if the Buddha’s teaching, in an unspoken manner, is revealed.
- KRIS YAO | ARTECH has been ranked 1st in the Architizer "30 Best Architecture Firms in Taiwan"
- Kris Yao: Alignment of skill, mind, and vision - Constructing Serene and Sublime Places
- "Water Moon Monastery" in the collection of "Designing Sacred Spaces"
- Water Moon Monastery has been awarded “the 12th Taipei Urban Landscape Award”
- Water Moon Monastery has been awarded the “National Architecture Awards, 2014”
- 8th Far Eastern Architectural Design Award - Honorable Mention & Most Popular Award - Water-Moon Monastery
- Water-Moon Monastery / The Far Eastern Architectural Design Award Series Report
- First Prize, 35th Taiwan Architecture Award─Water-Moon Monastery
- Finalists in the World Architecture Festival Awards Finalist Works─Water-Moon Monastery (Religious Classes), Wuzhen Theatre (Culture Category)