Set Open the
Door O Soul

Dowling Catholic High School
West Des Moines, IA
Completion date
October 2021

The Dowling Catholic High School Maroon Memorial Garden is a contemplative space adjacent to the Coppola Family St. Joseph Chapel.

The entrance threshold piece is oriented perpendicular to the axis of the setting sun on All Souls Day - inviting all who enter a moment of pause and recognition of entering into a qualitative space creating in the words of collaborator Brother William J. Woeger, F.S.C. a place "capable of bearing the weight of mystery."

Nestled into the hillside between a grouping of cherished trees, the weathering steel elements create a processional threshold experience artfully expressing the importance of faith and celebrating those of the Dowling Catholic community - the living and the departed - as one. The result is a place to experience awareness, a qualitative space where individuals are memorialized through a programming experience in dialogue for small group and individual contemplation. The memorial is dedicated to the deceased members of the Dowling Catholic High School and St. Joseph Academy community.

Excellence in Craft Award
AIA Iowa Chapter
Excellence in Craft — Merit Award
AIA Iowa Chapter