Compiled by: Team IAnD
Photography: Courtesy LAN
Deeply rooted within contemporary creation and at the crossing point of performing arts, Le Maillon theatre aims to reach outside of its walls and extract the performing arts world from its occasional elitist position...
Delving into the psyche of what makes architecture, design, scenography... and such other creative pursuits hit their mark of success, architects LAN from Paris, along with their associates are working on the Maillon Theatre – a grounded, soul-searching abode, especially suited to theatre aficionados in Strasbourg, France.
“This is not a theatre… could sum up our approach,” say the architects, while the project aims to conceive more than a place: a genuine artistic machine, where stage acting and its grounds of production meet.
The project substitutes the traditional composition based on the foyer – rooms – logistics triad for the idea of a territory mainly constituted with free spaces, as many blank sheets to reveal and activate. Forming a framework to be able to receive all the considered scenarios, a grid enhances these voids’ flexibility and creates places with a wide range of potential uses. Thus the virtual space created can be “updated” according to its inhabitants’ needs and expectations. The wall fitting this framework becomes what defines both, these voids’ status and character; the element that testifies the transition from design to architecture.
‘Interior – exterior’ / ‘Inside – outside’ / ‘Entrance – exit’ / ‘Private – public’/ ‘Volume – void’ / ‘Open – close’ / ‘Day – night’ ... While architecture can be thought as the junction between two antithetic spaces, a project’s significance is to be found in the swaying from one of these notions to the other, in the modality of this transition and its graduality, believe the architects.
On the outside, facades facing the public space become the interface, to which Le Maillon’s history can be perpetuated. An alternation of volumes and voids give rhythm to the building’s skin, composed of coloured concrete and large windows. The building is a territory of contrasts, surprises, a spatial maze, a landscape articulated between courtyards and terraces. Inside, Piranesian public spaces link together the different rooms, reception space and streets.
Façades form light filters allowing the sight to reach the city, the park and surrounding architecture. At night, they become screens by releasing colorful projection of images, as if they were printed on glass.
Abstraction is overcome by figuration, the constant completed by the ephemeral. Each place becomes a discovery, each detail an invention.
The project is scheduled for completion by 2017.