Exhibition Hall | Kata Farm
Kata Farm is an exhibition hall where you can visit the ruins of the oldest church in Sweden. Located in Varnhem in the region of Västergötland. It has been designed by AIX architects and the museum was officially opened in May 2017.
In 2005, excavations were initiated on a hill near Varnhems monastery church. Discovered was the remains of a farm church from the 9th century, which testifies that the county of Västergötland was christened 100 years earlier than previously thought. The ruins are the remains of Sweden's oldest Christian church and probably even the oldest building in Sweden. As per the name of the farm, Kata was the woman who ruled the farm and allowed the church to be built. And that is why the place was named Kata farm.
In order to make the old church accessible for visits, the church fundaments with its burial sites had to be protected from weather and wind. With a structure that works like a roof, the foundation is protected, but also creates a space for exhibiting and showcasing the stories about the place and its history.
The building is constructed of glued laminated timber beams that form an equilateral triangle in its cross section, a timber roof truss. The timber roof trusses are placed on horizontal sill plates of glued laminated timber, which rests on a number of pillars in the ground. The sloping walls of the building are covered by pine tar treated wood roof. The room above the ground is open to see the masonry from above. The glazed railing let visitors to see the basement. Even Kata's tomb from the mid-1000's is visible through the glazed floor from above.
Architects: AIX Arkitekter
Photography by Antonius Van Arkel.