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Junya Ishigama on the cover of the October 2019 issue of Azure Magazine. The Innovators Issue.
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October 2019

#275
October 2019

The Innovators Issue: Junya Ishigama's genre-busting architecture, Sidewalk Labs and the future of the city, and more!

Carving out a little bit of private space in a dense urban environment is a common struggle for city dwellers. When the neighbourhood is in a city as old as Paris, there are other elements to contend with in addition to available space: streetscapes steeped in historic and varied typologies, an elaborate mix of materials, finishes and facades. Wanting to insert a modern home in such a richly textured environment, Paris architect Jacques Moussafir used Corten cladding for its patinated aesthetic.

Tucked into a courtyard in the Bastille area, the single-family home was designed to feel slightly removed from the sounds and hectic pace of the streets. Situated on a 108-square-metre footprint, the house consists of a series of three cubic volumes whose arrangement forms a staggered façade, so that different parts line up with the exteriors of the two neighbouring houses. Carved into the steel, expansive glazed voids provide ample natural light, and a strong connection between indoors and out. Some are fixed, while others open reverse-awning style; and all the outer window frames were treated to a Corten-coloured paint to create a seamless look with the metal.

Moussafir Cubist House Corten
Hervu00e9 Abbadie

In an interesting move, Moussafir left a portion at the rear of the house open to expose the old masonry wall of the neighbouring building, making it a part of the interior. Covered at the top by glass, the resulting gap contains a metal staircase that accesses all levels of the house. It also serves as a light well by letting sunlight into the house through strategically placed cutouts on the rear wall.

With both the exterior and interior of the house, Moussafir intended to evoke a collage by using the volumes and materials to form “spatial compositions that oscillate between two- and three-dimensional.” In the main living spaces on the ground level, a concrete floor features wood “islands” that mirror the suspended volumes of the rooms above.

Moussafir Cubist House Corten
Hervu00e9 Abbadie

In the ground-level dining/kitchen area, a huge pivoting glass door opens to the immaculate back garden, by landscape designers Cao Perrot Studio, creating a true “urban oasis” that feels completely insulated from the bustling street out front.

AZURE is an independent magazine working to bring you the best in design, architecture and interiors. We rely on advertising revenue to support the creative content on our site. Please consider whitelisting our site in your settings, or pausing your adblocker while stopping by.