Refined Minimalism

Project: Apartment Paris Marais, 75004 Paris, France

Architects: Sophie Dries Architect, Paris, France

The architect has renovated a haussmanien apartment in Paris, in the Marais neighbourhood. A double living room, a kitchen and a master suite (bedroom/bathroom), and two children’s bedrooms with their bathroom and playroom were created in 100sq m space.

The quasi-totality of the layout was redesigned in order to bring together two originally separate apartments. All superfluous doorways have been removed and connections between the rooms have been simplified. The haussmanien style was refined and pared down in order to introduce minimal lines better suited to the contemporary usage of this living space now occupied by a modern family.

The street art collection of the property owners (Banksy, Jon One, Space Invaders, Obey…) counter balances the classic spaces of the double living room. Raw material such as linens, carpet in natural wool, light fixtures in ceramics and silver give warmth to the noble materials in place: herringbone parquet flooring, marble fireplace and floral moldings.

The living room is furnished with pieces by some of the greatest names in vintage design, such as Hans Wegner, Eero Saarinen and Charlotte Perriand, and also more recent pieces from the 1990s by Philippe Starck, among others.

The double living room accommodates a dining area furnished with vintage pieces carefully sourced from a number of different galleries: the marble tulip table by Saarinen, a set of Danish chairs and an armchair by Hans Wegner in leather and walnut. The hanging artwork in pottery and the contemporary artworks (sculpture in metal by Florian Sumi (Cetraro Gallery), and sculpture in silver by François Mascarello, on the sideboard tell stories, tales of travels, adventures and moments lived in this interior.

The large archway opens on to the lounge furnished with an L-shaped sofa and two
coffee tables with straw marquetry by Francois Mascarello and a vintage chair by Philippe Starck (Collection Paul Bourdet). The carmine red wool carpet (Moodz, Galerie Annie Pate) interplays in harmony with the raw linen curtains in brick red tones.

The bookshelf displays small sculptures and a painting by Giulia Andreani. On the white marble fireplace, the haussmanien mirror reflects the mauve vases in 19th century Sevres ceramics (Florian Daguet Bresson Collection) and the candle holders in gypsum designed by Sophie Dries. The large red painting by Banksy, British street artist, is the central piece in this double space, in constant dialogue with the mosaique by Space Invaders eloquently placed in a corner near to the archway; one can see a number of mosaics by this artist who takes his inspiration from 1990s videogames. The kitchen is designed to look like monoliths, all of the elements are integrated into the cupboards, medium wood all mass dyed in grey, and the functional elements are thus dissimulated.

A large worktop in saffron coloured concrete harmonizes with the copper handles. The custom-made to mesure bench creates a dining area around the famous octagonal table ‘Les Arcs’ by Charlotte Perriand. Above the tailor-made bench hangs a water colour by Giulia Andreani, and beside it sits a vintage stool by Philippe Starck in grey lacquered metal.

The gallery which leads to the kitchen ends in a purist archway, the gallery is decorated with some framed drawings from the series ‘Furoshiki’ by Pierre Bonnefille and more of those facetious Space Invaders in colourful mosaics.

In the master bedroom, the development is done in hues of blue, with the creation of a custom-made to mesure screen separe, hand painted by Francois Mascarello, the headboard is in raw linen, and the household linen plays between matte and shiny, oscillating between hessians and velvets; we find a portrait painted by Giulia Andreani. The night stands have been created from blocks of sculptural concrete. The master bathroom in anthracite wax concrete is enhanced by a bronze patina faucet and other elements in natural wood. The children’s playroom is in acidic tones, there is a vintage desk and a small arm chair in rattan, but also pieces by Philippe Starck like the stool with the drawing of his daughter and the retrofuturist neon (Collection Paul Bourdet); on the wall the school map dialogues with the framed graffiti by Jon One.



Built-up area: 100sq m

Year of completion: 2017