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Europe 40 Under 40 Awards ARCHIVE 2016 40under40
Childhood House - Heams & Michel Architects - France
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Childhood House - Heams & Michel Architects - France

Heams & Michel Architects - France


Benjamin Michel and Nicolas Heams met at the School of Architecture of Marseille, France. A common architectural approach arose then wherein the genesis of the project is to put in tension three elements: “ the program, the site, the material. Our paths diverged after the graduation. Benjamin practices in different agencies like Architecture-Studio in Paris or CAB Architectes in Nice while Nicolas begins alone. In 2005 the binomial reforms in Nice to collaborate mainly on public procurement. Mediterranean landscape in which we operate is the raw material of our work. It is foremost to develop a simple architectural style and not ostentatious. It is this attitude that allows us to cope with the strength of this landscape. Whatever the complexity or the scale of the project, each time it’s to do with the constraints without lapse into the exceptional.

Project Description

The childhood house is part of the renovation project of park farmhouse. Two objectives have guided the building’s construction:
- characterizing the landscape by including the project in it like a little pavilion.
- building a space, inside/outside, suitable for the development and accomplishment of children.
The project is set up at the limit of the land parcel and blends in with the building of the farmhouse and the park.
The north and west façades are much closed and express a limit. They serve as a surrounding wall for the site. On the
contrary, the wide glass east front and the covered playground open out onto the park and the vegetation.
The white colour of external walls highlights the volumetry of the project.
The curved line of the canopy and of the covered playground’s cantilever which characterize this project respond to components
of the landscape, the sky and the noteworthy trees.
Inner spaces consist of two activities rooms and a cooking workshop the glass frontage of which opens out generously on
the park, in the continuation of the covered playground, offering a dialogue between inside and outside.
An impression of serenity emanates from the entire facility and offers to children a quality life environment at their scale.
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