April 2019 – In the city of Ramat Yishai located in lower Galilee in Israel, a new synagogue has been recently completed. Designed by Itay Zehavi Architects, it is a large, modern building featuring an elegant combination of wood and glass. When the local community asked designer Ze’ev Moskovitz to design the Holy Ark and the Torah reading table, he decided to harness the qualities of Corian® Solid Surface to develop design concepts which would be original and creative while respecting all the requirements of a holy place.
Newly built synagogue in Ramat Yishai, Israel. The Holy Ark, designed by Ze’ev Moskovitz, is a five metres installation made with Corian® Solid Surface in the Glacier White colour; Project by Itay Zehavi Architects; photo Elad Gonen, all rights reserved.
The interiors of Ramat Yishai synagogue created by Itay Zehavi Architects have a contemporary style and stand out for their refinement while also meeting the need of a welcoming place for people who gather for prayers. The central line of windows glazing that runs from the ceiling to the wall maximize the amount of natural light inside the synagogue while the interior wooden cladding in contrast with the white walls contributes to create a relaxing and peaceful environment. The main element at the heart of each synagogue is the Holy Ark that, at Ramat Yishai, was designed by Ze’ev Moskovitz using Corian® Solid Surface in the pristine colour Glacier White. The 5-meter-tall Ark is an eye-catching installation that impresses for its huge volume yet seems to delicately support the wooden chest.
In a conversation with the congregation's leadership, the designer received a full mandate express his unique creative vision. The Ark style had to match with the modern building concept and Corian® Solid Surface – an easy to work material that can be used for creating almost any shape – the ideal solution.
“My inspirations were born out of two images: a of pair of hand palms open in prayer and the Cherubim Wings on the holy Ark of the Covenant. The search for the right material led me to an unexpected finding that was Corian® Solid Surface. It has a special quality of having a clear presence and yet not too loud. Since a synagogue is a sacred place, I wanted to use a material that conveyed purity, therefore choosing the Glacier White colour of Corian® was a perfect match. Other than those qualities, the UV resistance of Corian® was crucial for this project since there was a direct sunlight coming through the skylight behind and above the Ark.” explains designer Ze’ev Moskovitz.
Israeli company Boristone that has been specializing in the fabrication of Corian® Solid Surface for many years, fabricated and installed the ‘wings’ design envisioned by Ze’ev Moskovitz. With the expertise of its owner architect Guy Faktorovich, they could satisfy the high standard expectations of the designer.
“As the project began to realize itself, I could see another one of Corian® Solid Surface best qualities benefitting my design - its seamless surface and the way the Corian® pieces had assembled one adjacent to the other to create a smooth, seamless and clean surface. As a designer there is no greater satisfaction than seeing your vision come true and enabling your clients to appreciate and be proud of their unique new Ark made of Corian®.” added Ze’ev Moskovitz.