In a space housing one of the museum’s permanent collections, The Best of All Worlds consists of regal chairs – identical in upholstery and shape, but differing drastically in height. Faustino, the co-founder of the Paris architecture firm Bureau des Mésarchitecture, devised the installation as a space to pontificate, discuss and exchange ideas.
Arranged in a ring and facing inwards, the chairs grow taller – their legs more elongated and fragile as the circle widens. With this set-up, it’s easy to imagine the installation as a gathering place for a salon, where creative thinkers could debate the art works throughout the gallery.
Based in both Paris and Lisbon, Faustino is known for his avant-garde style that explores the physicality of space. He’s built towering teahouses and a delicate swing set converted from an old billboard frame. And, this past year, he created Doppelganger, a 3D-printed kissing mask that brings two faces together for the perfect smooch.
While The Best of All Worlds may seem like a tamer piece, it’s made much more powerful by the context that Faustino chose for it. The surrounding art includes column statues from the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Senlis that were symbolically decapitated during the French Revolution.
The Best of All Worlds is on display at the City of Architecture and Heritage in Paris until December 4.
Faustino is also a speaker at the Azure-sponsored series Vis-à-Vis Architecture: When French and Canadian Architects Connect. He will deliver talks on November 22 and 23, at the University of Toronto and OCADU, respectively.