The subject of the grands ensembles (housing complexes) selected for the French Pavilion is a good example of the ambivalence of an architect’s role, which is often decried; once, the urban environment of towers and large housing complexes was even blamed for social unrest in the “schemes”, also known as “estates” or “projects”. On the contrary, the challenge raised by this exhibition aims to show that contemporary architects have things to say about the “suburban crisis,” by working on “transformation” rather than just “repairs”.
Designed by Complex City in an area of Toulouse, France, the Mediatheque is built through network connections and brick concepts. As a place of network connections, the media library becomes a space which preserves and gives access to audio-visual contents, sound documents and video recordings, material considered as cultural testimony with the same value than written documents. This building also has the purpose of exalting the brick, an architectural material considered as a cultural patrimony of this region. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Architects: Antonio Virga Architecte + AAVP Architecture
Location: Angers, France
Project Management: Antonio Virga architect, AAVP Architecture – Vicent Parreira
Project Managers: Thomas Lastennet architecte, Romain Braida architecte urbanist, Gwendal Herve architecte
Project Year: 2012
Photographs: Luc Boegly, Eric Heranval
LEGO® has just announced the newest classic building to join the collection of renowned architectural replicas in their Architecture series, the Villa Savoye, designed by Le Corbusier. Capturing the essence of the modernist villa, the small scale replica also makes sure to touch on Corbusier’s well-known ‘five points’. One of the most easily recognizable and renowned examples of the International style, the LEGO version will be available September 1 at a suggested price of $69.99.
Lying on the outskirts of Paris, France, Villa Savoye was designed as a private country house in 1931 and quickly became one of the most influential buildings and cemented Le Corbusier’s reputation as one of the most important architects of the 20th century. More images after the break.
Designed by ANMA to act as a natural machine, the new headquarters of the Ministry of Defense, located in southwestern Paris, includes a health center, restaurants, media and sport centers as well as a crèche. This complex structure, designed around the strictest security requirements, is the largest public building to be built in France for 20 years. The structure aims to present an image of the armed forces, not only as a protective force, but a strong and stately force as well. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Two friends, the photographers of The Seventh Movement, gave themselves one week to photograph as much of Paris as possible. Unsure of where this would lead, the ambitious project turned out to be larger than they could ever imagine. After an intense week in Paris and spending countless hours editing, organizing and re-editing thousands of photographs, they settled on this time-lapse production – a synthesis of their best work. It is a bit long, but well worth the watch.
Created by Paul Scales and Atelier Kit for the 7th annual ‘Le Festival des Architectures Vives ’ in Montpellier, France, Reframe explores the theme of ‘surprise’ through the creation of an object that reframes the relation of the visitor to the space, the historic architecture and the other visitors. The festival is comprised of an architectural walking tour through the historic city center where heritage sites are opened up to modern architecture. Visitors experience a shift from the position of observer to observed, from control to controlled and willingly or not, become engaged in a game of surprise and be surprised. More images and architects’ description after the break.
This week we want to introduce a film by one of the filmmakers that cannot be out of this list. We’re talking about Jacques Tati, the French director, writer, and actor that made his first color movie in 1958, ”Mon Oncle”.
Tati shows how the modern age affects and dramatically changes the way that people live. All the new technologies at that moment are incorporated in the scenes, were the interaction between this new concept of “modern spaces” and people is an element present in most of the movie.
What do you think about this approach of how modernity influenced (or still influencing) the way of living of our societies?
COMPLEX CITY shared with us their Wine Concept Store which is focused around three basic concepts: the vertical, the visual, and sensitivity. The image of the vine and its linearity are the starting point of this verticality that is reflected in the facade while the curve expresses a sensitivity related to a sensory awareness that takes place during the taste of wine. More images and architects’ description after the break.