Old church, new pilgrims

A skater practises at the Kaos Temple skatepark in the northern Spanish village of Llanera, in the Asturias region, on Saturday.

The skatepark is housed in the former Church of Santa Barbara, which has been turned into a place of pilgrimage for lovers of skate culture by the Church Brigade Collective and Spanish artist Okuda San Miguel.

The space is lined with half- pipes, featuring images of skulls, animals and human faces painted in trippy, kaleidoscopic shapes and electrically vivid colours.

The church, which was built in 1913, was abandoned for decades until the Church Brigade Collective, which teamed up with Red Bull and an online fund-raising platform, stepped in, had the building deconsecrated, and turned it into a skateboarding park.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 28, 2015, with the headline 'Old church, new pilgrims'. Print Edition | Subscribe