A remarkable fluidity characterises Hiroshi Nakamura's latest project, a wedding chapel in Hiroshima, Japan. Made of two intertwining staircases, the building spirals upwards with self-contained poise. A metaphor for the joining of two separate lives into one, this enchanting chapel captures the spirit of the ceremonies that take place inside.
An unmistakeable sense of momentum emanates from Daniel Libeskind's latest project, a convention centre in the Belgian city of Mons. Its powerful prow bringing to mind a boat cresting a wave, the building is characterised by a graceful dynamism. Combining Libeskind's trademark angularity with a sensually rounded underbelly, the structure is a skilfully executed balance of contrasts.
Once a year, the residents of the picturesque Polish town of Żory march through the streets of the medieval Old Town, their flaming torches casting shadows in the night. There is debate about the origins of this Festival of Fire; some say it is derived from Żory's settlement in the thirteenth century, when forests were burnt to the ground to create agricultural land. Others say that it comes from the strategically located township's besieged history, or that it commemorates the Great Fire of 1702, which nearly destroyed the thriving regional centre. Regardless, everyone agrees that Żory's history and identity is bound up in flames; even the word Żory itself translates to 'heat'.