Atelier Microméga's colourful project "La Madeleine" has won the jury's special mention at the 2017 edition of the Festival des Architectures Vives of Montpellier. This year the festival's theme was 'Emotion'.
From emotion to Proust's Madeleine
Different emotions can be triggered by any of our five senses. A smell, a view, or a flavour can stimulate memories in each and every one of us. These sensations mirror our past, present and future experiences. Everyone of us can experiment very different emotions in front of the same object. This is called nostalgia. Proust's Madeleine creates the link between past emotions that have made us, and the thrill that sends us straight to the future.
“La Madeleine” pavilion is combining architecture, space, and materials to symbolize nostalgia. To echo to childhood memories, the pavilion invites visitors to move, to play and to interact with a playful structure. Adulthood is represented by plain and sharpened cubes, the external part of the pavilion. It encloses an imaginary, creative and playable world, similar to a children hut.
From children’s game to building reality
“La Madeleine” is a 3mx3mx3m structure made of 2500 colourful plastics bricks. It is cubic and slick from the outside. Thanks to a zenithal opening, the inside space offers a unique view to the courtyard buildings and the sky. Some bricks integrated on the arch allow people to plug new bricks and to modify the inner world by themselves. It is a reminder of childhood by referring to a construction game. Notice that the famous colourful bricks have grown, just as the architects and the visitors.
Atelier Micromega has created “La Madeleine” with the idea of adding a social value at all the different stages of the project, from conception to construction. Atelier Micromega has been able to build La Madeleine thanks to 90 individuals who have donated for the project. This funding has also permitted to reuse the bricks after the festival. The material has created emotions during the festival and it continues to give joy to people today. Indeed, all the giant plastic bricks have been donated after the festival. Some have been given to several child-care centres of Montpellier and some have been sent to a national charity, “Les restos du Coeur”.
This new use of the bricks might give children (and adults) the opportunity to develop their architectural skills in a playful way.
Location: Montpellier- France
Schedule: June 13th, 2017 to June 18th, 2017
Material: Plastic bricks ( 30cmx10cmx5cm)
Overall size: 3mx3mx3m
Architects: Atelier Microméga J.Guyard / A. Lahaye / C. Granjon / T. Pourteyroux / G. Martinez
Partners: Unanime architectes / icmArchitectures / vetementpro.com / ENSAG / communauté universitaire Grenoble Alpes / La Région Auvergne – Rhône Alpes
Main supplier: AdVita sarl
Cost: 7152 € TTC
Photographers: Paul KOZLOWSKI ©photoarchitecture / ©AtelierMicroméga
Atelier Micromega has been created out of a common desire for creation. The team is composed of five young architects and friends, who share their multidisciplinary approach to architecture. The different skills of each one of them enable the creation process to progress upon multiple ideas. Gathering as a collective allows them today to enter the profession by following their own values. The team has a creative and analytic eye they use on multiple scales, which makes them question both large territory and constructive details. The strength of their projects is to highlight the hidden potential of a place. They use architecture to unify landscape and design objects, space and user.
Atelier Micromega keeps questioning their references with an open mind and that make them a strong, curios and engaged collective. Each one of their projects tells a story that makes us reflect on what surrounds us. Their work is a combination of reinterpretation, reminder and immersion to please users through a physical and psychological experience.