Atelier Volpe
La Garde-Guérin, Lozère, France
ENSA Montpellier

Like a block of stone, the house is inspired by the typologies of the houses of La Garde Guérin, a fortified village in the south of France. Using stone from the site, combined with concrete for a contemporary implementation, from the outside it gives an impression of massiveness, of a solid and mysterious block. Once inside, a chestnut wood structure, inspired by local building principles, unfolds between its walls, creating deep spaces that bring light. The house is designed in sequence, where the structure is explored through use and where the play of light gives rhythm to the occupants’ day. Designed to accommodate a theatre company, the notions of actor and spectator are reinterpreted through this inhabited structure.

The living room is located on the ground floor, its space is similar to a traditional house, but the spacing between the wooden beams allows light to flood the room. Once up to the first level, a wide corridor serving as an office for the actors opens directly onto the living room, which allows for a promontory on the main living area. And finally, on the last level, under the last frame, is the dormitory for the actors. This dormitory is illuminated by the bands of windows on the sides of the house. These banded windows give the impression that the roof is levitating, like a cracked stone letting in light.
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