This project responds to a desire on the part of the governing instances of Blanquefort to extend the complex of municipal buildings situated around the former Carpinet monastery. The logic behind its positioning is derived from the architectural composition of the existing buildings and surrounding plot layout.
The project is designed to form a homogeneous and coherent addition to the existing environment and takes the form of a supplementary building grafted onto the given volumes, however radically different in form. Rather than merely imitating its architectural precursors, the extension generates a tension with the infant school and entrance to the music and dance school. This juxtaposition creates a sense of surprise and brings a new identity to the site. The building’s circular form, however seemingly incongruous, is inspired by the temporary tents and marquees set up opposite the music school during the festivals.
The building’s circular form, however seemingly incongruous, is inspired by the temporary tents and marquees set up opposite the music school during the festivals regularly organized by the Town Hall. Its form is, then, eloquently entrenched in the collective memory of the local inhabitants. The acoustic requirements for a place for performing music, along with demands for a high level of energy efficiency, led the architects to create a ‘box within a box’, comprising a series of heavy concrete walls. Rather than seeking to envelop the building in a purposeless outer cladding, its façades are rendered more expressive by including vertically positioned wooden logs within the dark grey concrete of its outer walls and inside the formwork. Once the formwork has been removed, the logs are petrified in the concrete, giving the building a rough skin and attention-grabbing, organic feel.
The building brings generally dispersed activities together, including classical and contemporary music and dance lessons, choral singing, rehearsal rooms and recording studios. The new building aims to foster exchange between all those who use it and who are not customarily given the opportunity to meet up and carry out their artistic activities under one roof.
Contributed by King Kong
Photos © Arthur Péquin
Architect: atelier d'architecture King Kong – Laurent Portejoie
Project Manager: Marion Salagnac
Technical Engineering Company: Math Ingénierie
Acoustician: idB Acoustique
Surface Area: 418 m2