Office rue Gambetta
Salem Mostafoui

Office rue Gambetta

Emmanuel Combarel, Dominique Marrec 建築家 として

EXTENDING OUR DESIRES IN A FINITE WORD

Conservation is the starting point for the project. It is a cultural prerequisite as much as an environmental position. Our starting point is a legacy, an object - more infrastructure than building - the product of an era, the marker of a technology. The legacy is a concrete block, an urban bunker that once housed an obsolete switchboard centre. The machines had to be heavy, bulky and shielded from view and light. The legacy is massive, stocky, dense, as wide as it is high: 24 by 24 metres, clad in thick, prefabricated concrete facades with few openings.

photo_credit ECDM
ECDM

Here, concrete is at once memory, matrix and structure. This material speaks to us of time, telling us a story of progress, a story of past industry. From this memory, we inherit geometric forms, organised, woven, sparing of material, more than sparing of ornament.

photo_credit Salem Mostafoui
Salem Mostafoui

On this site, which is full of grey energy, our intervention was deliberately sober, in contrast with a major programmatic transformation. It was a question of installing current uses and practices in spaces that were characterised and obsolete, of installing our time in another, of creating a filiation between two eras: after industry, services; after the workshop, the office, but always work as a constant.

photo_credit Salem Mostafoui
Salem Mostafoui

So we began to plan ahead, as part of a history to be continued. Given that the essence of architecture is time, we put sustainability at the heart of our reflections as an aesthetic stance.

photo_credit ECDM
ECDM

This work of accompaniment and inflexion has enabled us to reinitialise the site while preserving its materials, implementation and grey energies. Sustainable architecture is above all architecture that lasts, architecture that is plastic and adaptable to a chosen living environment.

photo_credit Salem Mostafoui
Salem Mostafoui

We have therefore reformatted, reused and adapted an inherited history, while limiting our intervention on the tough, the hard and the brutal. Once again, we’ve taken an aesthetic stance, paving the way for future transgressions in a story whose end we won’t know. A passing of the baton, in short.

photo_credit Salem Mostafoui
Salem Mostafoui

So our project is an architecture inscribed in another, in which optimism and progress are to be transcended like a demilitarised fort or a desacralised church. In short, it’s less about surfaces than volumes, much less about an office than a space of freedom open to transgression.

photo_credit ECDM
ECDM
photo_credit ECDM
ECDM
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