LocationParadeplein, 2018 Antwerp, Belgium
From the architect. Michelin-star chef Sergio Herman and chef Nick Bril created their “fine dining meets rock ’n roll” restaurant vision together with Piet Boon over three years ago in a mythical location in Antwerp; the chapel of a former military hospital. Piet Boon Studio, responsible for the interior design and styling of The Jane, since then collaborated in the chapel’s unique transformation into a high-end, contemporary restaurant with international allure where experience is key.
Based on her belief in authenticity, functionality and materials that ‘age beautifully’ the studio chose to restore only the highly necessary in the chapel and hence preserve the rest. The original ceiling amongst others conveys the pure, understated and respectful environment that serves as the authentic host for the ultimate fine dining experience. The original altar gave way to the kitchen that - just like the atelier- is embraced by glass, like a modern shrine. It allows guests to witness everything the team creates for them.
The shared passion of Herman, Bril and Boon to work with pure, rich materials is expressed in the interior in which qualitatively outstanding natural stone, leather and oak wood are used. Moreover Piet Boon Studio, as with many of her projects, collaborated with a number of leading creative partners to shape the “fine dining meets rock ’n roll” character of the overall experience.
Job Smeets and Nynke Tynagel of Studio Job designed the windows consisting of 500 unique panels. Inspired by the chapel’s original function, foam spatulas, sunflowers, devils, skulls, babies, Jezus on the cross, dice, apple cores, wrenches, ice cream cones, a canon, croissants, penguins, trophies, gas masks and birthday cakes portray a contemporary translation of the old stained-glass windows. Archetypes from various worlds each tell masterpiece stories of good and evil, rich and poor, life and death as well as good food and religion.
The ‘piece de résistance’ in the center of the restaurant is a 800 kilograms-weighing gigantic chandelier of 12 by 9 meters with over 150 lights, designed by the Beirut-based design studio .PSLAB. The chandelier was created in such a way that it contributes to the intimate and ambient divinity of the chapel interior. The team, specialised in the design and production of site-specific contemporary lighting, laid out an overall lighting plan for The Jane to accentuate the unique elements of both the building and the interior. It is aimed to create a scenic ambience by seamlessly combining artistry and engineering.