Our offices have moved to Bastille! For several months, we searched for a courtyard studio to set up more comfortably near our work sites in the 11th arrondissement. As if to thumb our nose at our ambitions, we ended up in a charming, typically Parisian flat on the fourth floor of a slightly tired building, a stone’s throw from our canteen « le Café de l’Industrie », closer to the sky than the ground.
Perhaps our unconscious is doing things right? But in the end, I think we are happier to work in our perched nest, less exposed to passers-by and more secluded, in the shadow of the genius of Liberty perched on its column that blows its wind of creativity over the neighbourhood. Our offices thus resemble the informal, personal and intimate living spaces that we like to imagine for our clients and friends in a confidential manner. And wanting to meet with us has to be earned.
As usual, we restructured the space to suit our needs without rushing it. Three months later, the flat has kept its mouldings, its parquet floors and its fireplaces, but it has gained in luminosity, perspective and functionality.
The entrance in a head-to-toe red highlights the black wooden coat hooks/sculptures by Franck Evennou and the suspension by Mategot. The daylight seeps in through the glass roof and lets the eye wander into the next room.
The kitchen is dressed in a very soft green that harmonises with the grey-veined marble of the worktop, the credenza and the floor. It opens onto the main room and has nothing to hide, fully assuming its function at the heart of the flat. The crockery has fun making compositions on the walls, like so many living paintings. The bar defines the space and offers the possibility of receiving clients, suppliers and friends for a drink or an improvised meal without disturbing the work in progress and without losing space.
The main room is more neutral with its white walls, base and grey ceiling. It has a large military canteen table at our disposal. We take advantage of its tray to display documents and samples or to receive our clients. On the wall, a photo of Marie Pierre Morel like an interior window on a reverie.
The large glass roof installed between the reception room and the computer room creates depth and gives an additional breath of fresh air: computers, library with press articles, books and documentation are on view. The walls are used as a support for drawings or mood boards and change according to moods and desires.
The last room is revealed through an open door. It is draped in an intense blue colour to serve as a showcase for the Napoleon III desk that follows me from one move to the next. A bench to rest on when the days are too long, the paintings of my friends on the walls and the fireplace that is always ready to offer a fire make it a more intimate room.
A small bathroom hidden in the back of the flat gives the feeling of a discreet and timeless luxury with its marble mosaic carpet, its retro bathtub, and its metro tiles underlined by a black frieze.
I like to think that this place gives us comfort and solace, that it nourishes our work and our reflection, that it reflects a certain art of living and working that is close to what the Argentinean poet Jorge Luis Borges calls « a modest and secret complexity ».