A Basic Parisian Apartment Crammed With Present day Style

IN THE Slide of 2019, the architect and designer Sophie Dries, 35, and her associate, the sculptor Marc Leschelier, 37, moved into a two-bedroom Haussmannian apartment in Paris’s 11th Arrondissement, not considerably from the city’s historic Place des Vosges. For various months, they lived almost fully with no furniture or home comforts, help save for a mattress on the bedroom ground — which doubled as a hangout space and dwelling place of work — and two meal plates. They experienced no curiosity in getting stopgap objects and preferred to choose time to acquaint themselves with the place right before making it their possess. “We would absolutely stay clear of the residing area, however,” Dries claims. “It was so vacant, it had an echo.”

But the couple weren’t specifically setting up with a blank slate. The 1,450-square-foot second-floor condominium is an archetypal 19th-century Parisian property, full with all the trappings of the era’s refined, ornamental architecture. The 10-foot-high ceilings have ornate, botanically themed moldings the partitions are wainscoted and the floors retain their authentic geometric two-tone marquetry. At the western conclusion of the 376-sq.-foot dwelling room, there is an elaborately sculpted marble fire inscribed with the 12 months of its development, 1853, and on the adjacent wall a row of flooring-to-ceiling French windows open on to a balcony overlooking the vast, tree-lined boulevard under. The home, in other text, was intended to be a sumptuous backdrop for the gilded commodes and carved-leg bergères of its time. But Dries and Leschelier — who fulfilled not lengthy following they both graduated from the architecture program at Paris’s École des Beaux-Arts — had an entirely diverse eyesight for it. “We needed to generate a clash amongst this bourgeois common Haussmannian house and modern household furniture and thoughts,” suggests Dries. “We reside on the previous continent, and we like its sense of heritage, but we’re young — it’s vital to have that paradox.”

Due to the fact FOUNDING HER namesake architecture and design and style studio in 2014, Dries has crafted a portfolio of household jobs in Paris — including a minimalist penthouse on the Rue Saint-Honoré for a pair of artwork collectors and an elegantly stripped-back two-bedroom close to the Canal Saint-Martin for a youthful few who operate in manner and tech — that every serve as a deft portrait of their residents while reflecting Dries’s own pursuits in combining pure lines with wealthy textures and unconventional components. With his raw huge-scale sculptures — generally pavilion-esque concrete varieties — Leschelier similarly seeks to introduce a sense of spontaneity and experimentation into the architectural process. This shared sensibility, which rejects hierarchies of old and new, kind and functionality, is evident all over the pair’s household. Starting in December 2019, they slowly and gradually furnished the condominium, which has a standard circular structure — a living space and a dining home direct off an entryway, and the extra personal rooms, including the bedroom and a nursery for the couple’s 3-month-old daughter, Daria, move into a single one more from there — above a two-calendar year period, mixing pieces by designers this sort of as Philippe Starck and Ettore Sottsass (obtained generally by Paris-centered gallerists, like Paul Bourdet and Yves and Victor Gastou) with Dries’s individual handcrafted creations.

Arrangements were being normally knowledgeable by affinities that Dries or Leschelier found between seemingly unrelated things. In the dwelling room, for illustration, the few paired a eating table with a wavy-edged oval oak major, and tubular rusted metal legs by Dries with a set of Starck’s ’80s-era steel Von Vogelsang chairs for Driade. A 10-by-6 1/2-foot framed print by Ryan McGinley depicting a few nude figures sprawled throughout a sand dune addresses virtually the full south wall. Dries shared pictures of the area with the British designer Max Lamb, who then established a slablike rubber coffee table for the house in a complementary shade of peanut butter brown. The piece now sits beside a crescent-moon-shaped modular sofa, made by Dries and upholstered in deep aubergine velvet, that like the floor is built from oak but in a more contemporary burled veneer.

Leschelier also contributed custom is effective to the dwelling place: two console tables composed of steel-topped stacked cinder blocks sealed with overflowing mortar that sit on possibly side of 1 of the French windows. Dries, too, often elevates raw, humble aspects in her exercise and counts the postwar Italian Arte Povera movement, which championed every day products, and the minimalism of the French Modernist inside designer Jean-Michel Frank among the her references. “Frank was a punk of his time, and I frequently marvel what he’d do nowadays,” she states. For the couple’s bed room, a warm but restrained refuge defined by earth tones and pure textures, she utilised a slap brush to utilize an organic, craggy white plaster finish to the tall built-in closets, and she had curtains made from about woven hessian, a material usually used in upholstery. The sunlight-flooded eating place, adjacent to the residing space, capabilities a single of her brass Glow chandeliers, made for the lights organization Kaia, whose egg-formed glass globes are topped with molded papier-mâché situations. And for the compact galley kitchen at the far stop of the apartment, she selected a blue-gray polished concrete to cover the counter tops and floor, a refreshing departure from the beige and white palette her shoppers so normally ask for.

Dries and Leschelier share an appreciation for performs with a sense of humor. They are lovers, for case in point, of the expressive approach of the Italian designer Gaetano Pesce, and 1 of his anthropomorphic, brightly coloured hand-poured resin Nobody’s Perfect chairs sits — near a plush purple and inexperienced tufted wool rug by Dries for Nilufar Gallery that evokes an otherworldly animal pelt — in the corner of the apartment’s vestibule, a hushed, jewel-box-like area in which the couple’s eclectic tastes are most entirely on exhibit. To amplify the room’s personal, denlike truly feel, Dries upholstered the walls in jade inexperienced Japanese straw. Then, taking inspiration from the Barnes Basis in Philadelphia — in which aged masters and personal curiosities amassed in excess of decades by the early 20th-century collector Albert C. Barnes are exhibited facet by aspect — she hung some of the couple’s smaller sized-scale artworks salon-design across them. A spiritual engraving by the German Renaissance learn Albrecht Dürer, inherited from Leschelier’s maternal grandmother, appears not considerably from a photograph of an English breakfast by the British photographer Martin Parr an engraved landscape by Dries and Leschelier’s close close friend the French conceptual artist Laurent Grasso offsets a floral however everyday living by the young Azerbaijani painter Niyaz Najafov. “The space has no purpose, but it’s our favourite,” Dries states. “We required to uncover an absurd way of placing factors jointly devoid of any assumed of value.”

Now that the residing space no more time has an echo, the couple make whole use of it by web hosting friends for aperitifs. Even though neither promises to be a excellent cook, they equally delight in sharing a bottle of Chablis — or, when the celebration phone calls for it, a gin and tonic or two — with their loved ones, and it is in this space, much too, that they expend the most time with their daughter. But for Dries, the family’s home is also a skilled manifesto of sorts, a way to illustrate that a a lot more idiosyncratic dwelling space can maintain wonderful allure. “My clients may well be way too afraid to do most of the issues in this article,” she states. “But if they see them in the context of a common apartment, they may well modify their minds.”

Photograph assistant: Lilly Merck

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