First Methodist Church Chapel, photo by Ezra Stoller courtesy of Esto

First Methodist Church Chapel, 1961
La Verne, CA

“The first marriage performed at this church was the marriage of technology and art…”

Ladd & Kelsey, Architects

Ladd & Kelsey used new technology in designing the First Methodist Church Chapel to create an artful house of worship whose form and environment were not limited by traditional materials and building methods. The chapel was then a house of worship that would have been impossible one generation before.

The chapel’s sculptural form were created by separately casting a wall and a roof section on the ground before craning them into their positions. This process was repeated five times using the same forms. In this marriage of technology and art, technology served the creative process and created construction savings. And, the construction method influenced and governed the structure’s overall aesthetic.

First Methodist Church Chapel, photo courtesy of Esto