July 20, 2024

Perfect Design

Home Of A Nation

A Classic Parisian Apartment Filled With Modern Design

6 min read

IN THE Fall of 2019, the architect and designer Sophie Dries, 35, and her lover, the sculptor Marc Leschelier, 37, moved into a two-bed room Haussmannian apartment in Paris’s 11th Arrondissement, not much from the city’s historic Position des Vosges. For several months, they lived almost totally without having furniture or home comforts, help you save for a mattress on the bed room floor — which doubled as a hangout spot and property business office — and two dinner plates. They experienced no interest in acquiring stopgap goods and required to choose time to acquaint them selves with the area in advance of creating it their individual. “We would totally prevent the residing space, although,” Dries states. “It was so empty, it had an echo.”

But the pair weren’t particularly beginning with a blank slate. The 1,450-sq.-foot second-ground apartment is an archetypal 19th-century Parisian property, full with all the trappings of the era’s refined, decorative architecture. The 10-foot-large ceilings have ornate, botanically themed moldings the partitions are wainscoted and the flooring retain their initial geometric two-tone marquetry. At the western finish of the 376-sq.-foot living space, there is an elaborately sculpted marble hearth inscribed with the year of its development, 1853, and on the adjacent wall a row of floor-to-ceiling French windows open on to a balcony overlooking the vast, tree-lined boulevard below. The dwelling, in other words and phrases, was built to be a luxurious backdrop for the gilded commodes and carved-leg bergères of its time. But Dries and Leschelier — who satisfied not long just after they each graduated from the architecture plan at Paris’s École des Beaux-Arts — had an entirely diverse eyesight for it. “We desired to develop a clash involving this bourgeois usual Haussmannian household and present-day furnishings and thoughts,” claims Dries. “We dwell on the outdated continent, and we like its feeling of background, but we’re young — it’s important to have that paradox.”

Considering that FOUNDING HER namesake architecture and layout studio in 2014, Dries has developed a portfolio of household tasks in Paris — like a minimalist penthouse on the Rue Saint-Honoré for a pair of artwork collectors and an elegantly stripped-back two-bed room in the vicinity of the Canal Saint-Martin for a youthful few who operate in manner and tech — that every provide as a deft portrait of their residents although reflecting Dries’s own pursuits in combining pure lines with wealthy textures and uncommon supplies. With his raw significant-scale sculptures — frequently pavilion-esque concrete types — Leschelier equally seeks to introduce a sense of spontaneity and experimentation into the architectural method. This shared sensibility, which rejects hierarchies of old and new, kind and operate, is evident during the pair’s dwelling. Commencing in December 2019, they little by little furnished the apartment, which has a conventional circular format — a dwelling room and a eating area guide off an entryway, and the more personal rooms, which include the bedroom and a nursery for the couple’s 3-thirty day period-outdated daughter, Daria, circulation into one particular another from there — over a two-12 months interval, mixing pieces by designers such as Philippe Starck and Ettore Sottsass (acquired mostly by Paris-based gallerists, together with Paul Bourdet and Yves and Victor Gastou) with Dries’s very own handcrafted creations.

Preparations had been often knowledgeable by affinities that Dries or Leschelier noticed amongst seemingly unrelated objects. In the residing room, for example, the pair paired a eating desk with a wavy-edged oval oak top rated, and tubular rusted metal legs by Dries with a set of Starck’s ’80s-period metal Von Vogelsang chairs for Driade. A 10-by-6 1/2-foot framed print by Ryan McGinley depicting three nude figures sprawled throughout a sand dune handles practically the entire south wall. Dries shared photos of the area with the British designer Max Lamb, who then developed a slablike rubber espresso desk for the space in a complementary shade of peanut butter brown. The piece now sits beside a crescent-moon-formed modular sofa, intended by Dries and upholstered in deep aubergine velvet, that like the flooring is built from oak but in a additional contemporary burled veneer.

Leschelier also contributed customized performs to the dwelling place: two console tables composed of metal-topped stacked cinder blocks sealed with overflowing mortar that sit on either aspect of just one of the French windows. Dries, as well, normally elevates uncooked, humble features in her practice and counts the postwar Italian Arte Povera movement, which championed day to day components, and the minimalism of the French Modernist interior designer Jean-Michel Frank amongst her references. “Frank was a punk of his time, and I generally speculate what he’d do today,” she suggests. For the couple’s bedroom, a warm but restrained refuge outlined by earth tones and purely natural textures, she utilized a slap brush to implement an natural and organic, craggy white plaster complete to the tall created-in closets, and she had curtains built from around woven hessian, a fabric ordinarily applied in upholstery. The solar-flooded eating area, adjacent to the dwelling space, characteristics one particular of her brass Glow chandeliers, created for the lights business Kaia, whose egg-formed glass globes are topped with molded papier-mâché situations. And for the little galley kitchen area at the much end of the condominium, she chose a blue-gray polished concrete to cover the counter tops and floor, a refreshing departure from the beige and white palette her purchasers so often ask for.

Dries and Leschelier share an appreciation for operates with a sense of humor. They are followers, for example, of the expressive method of the Italian designer Gaetano Pesce, and 1 of his anthropomorphic, brightly colored hand-poured resin Nobody’s Fantastic chairs sits — in close proximity to a plush purple and green tufted wool rug by Dries for Nilufar Gallery that evokes an otherworldly animal pelt — in the corner of the apartment’s vestibule, a hushed, jewel-box-like house where the couple’s eclectic preferences are most thoroughly on display screen. To amplify the room’s personal, denlike truly feel, Dries upholstered the partitions in jade inexperienced Japanese straw. Then, getting inspiration from the Barnes Basis in Philadelphia — in which old masters and private curiosities amassed around many years by the early 20th-century collector Albert C. Barnes are exhibited side by facet — she hung some of the couple’s more compact-scale artworks salon-style throughout them. A religious engraving by the German Renaissance master Albrecht Dürer, inherited from Leschelier’s maternal grandmother, appears not considerably from a photograph of an English breakfast by the British photographer Martin Parr an engraved landscape by Dries and Leschelier’s close friend the French conceptual artist Laurent Grasso offsets a floral however everyday living by the younger Azerbaijani painter Niyaz Najafov. “The area has no purpose, but it’s our beloved,” Dries claims. “We wished to obtain an absurd way of placing factors jointly without having any assumed of price.”

Now that the residing area no for a longer time has an echo, the couple make entire use of it by internet hosting good friends for aperitifs. Though neither promises to be a good prepare dinner, they both equally delight in sharing a bottle of Chablis — or, when the event calls for it, a gin and tonic or two — with their loved ones, and it is in this place, far too, that they expend the most time with their daughter. But for Dries, the family’s home is also a expert manifesto of sorts, a way to illustrate that a extra idiosyncratic dwelling house can keep great allure. “My customers may possibly be much too concerned to do most of the items in this article,” she says. “But if they see them in the context of a standard condominium, they may possibly adjust their minds.”

Photograph assistant: Lilly Merck

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