Saint Lukes

McBryde Parker Architects

  • Address
    2535 Cleveland Avenue
    Fort Myers, FL
  • Built

St. Luke's Church moves away from the regionalism of Sarasota School modern and takes its cues from new turns in the modern movement. By the 60s the Brutalist movement was heavily influential, as was a rising architecture star named Louis Kahn. St. Luke's still uses simplified forms, but the forms are no longer light and delicate. They are blockier, more firm and heavy, like the wood blocks children might use to build with. Kahn was interested in finding the philosophical essence of architecture, where each element of building can have meaning and desire. His influence here is apparent.

Kahn made historical references acceptable once again, as can be seen in McBryde Parker's use of arches throughout the design along the arcades and in the large clerestory windows of the sanctuary's crossing.

The interior of St. Luke's equally feels less delicate and more massive than previous the Sarasota School churches giving it a greater sense of substance and scale than it really has. The light that filters into the sanctuary enters severely and dramatically from far above the pews, more like a traditional cathedral. The space is composed of simple, clean geometries like other modern buildings. But it also has a more classical relationship with the worshiper, which gives it a more traditional sacred experience. It is almost monastic.

AIA Florida Southwest Southwest Florida Museum of History Herman Miller