Slit window is a narrow opening in the wall framed with glass. They are mostly used as elements to beautify the building façade. Long vertical slit windows draw the eyes upwards and thus make the building appear taller. Similarly, horizontal ones create an illusion of a low-height structure. Multiple slit windows are often used together to accentuate these effects. During the night, the interior lighting makes the building glow through these windows lending an aesthetic touch to the building elevation. And during the day, they create a dramatic effect when streaks of light penetrate through them to magically light up the interior spaces.
Though slit windows do not suffice as source of ample daylight, their impact on the interior space cannot be contested. These windows are also suitable if the building surroundings aren’t pleasant enough for a full-fledged window. Slit windows bring in natural light and to some extent restrict view to the outside. They also ensure privacy. These narrow windows can be decorated with small planters to add to the interior décor. Slit windows have fixed panes and are usually inoperable.
Famous Slit Windows
Architects who love to play with light have always put the slit window to work. Here are a few landmark projects where the use of slits/slit windows have made all the difference.
The Church of the Light is still considered as one of the finest works of Japanese architect, Tadao Ando. Built in 1989, this church features two perpendicular slits in the wall forming the cruciform. These slits let light into the otherwise dark concrete structure and create a dramatic yet serene ambience in the church. read more>>
Clerestory windows have adorned buildings since the ancient times in Egyptian temples, Roman basilicas and Gothic churches. And they have been adopted with equal grace in contemporary buildings. In fact, the renowned masters of architecture-Frank Lloyd Wright and Le Corbusier have extensively used clerestory windows in most of their works and turned it into a remarkable element of modern architecture. read more>>