WALLPAPER* ARCHITECTS’ DIRECTORY 2019: Arthur Ozenne and Mathilde Gaudemet founded Dixneufcentquatrevingtsix (1986) in Paris in 2014. Driven by sensitivity to context, place and history, their work seeks to uncover the meaning of the lived experience through emotion and individuality, as seen in the Benoit & Roselyne House (pictured), their expressive extension of a traditional farmhouse in rural France.
Founded in Pairs by Arthur Ozenne and Mathilde Gaudemet, a somewhat eccentric studio is developing a uniquely poetic take on architecture. The curiously named DIXNEUFCENTQUATREVINGTSIX (1986) has found widespread acclaim for its Benoit & Roselyne house in Nimes, France – a monolithic sculptural volume that rises out of the surrounding vegetation obliquely.
‘Our practice is characterised by the versatility of the projects on which we work,’ the duo explains. ‘We seek the right questions and bring the answers that make sense, having an iconoclastic look at programmes or often standardised situations.’
Iconoclastic is right. Benoit & Roselyne, with its stark, white facade and tight internal angles is challenging, particularly as a residential property for a growing family. But, in its strangeness there is beauty. A patchwork of oddly-sized windows scales a bedroom wall; a winding staircase folds in on itself, the roof is idiosyncratically pitched, through finely assembled geometries. This is rebellious architecture with an academic backbone.
‘Architecture takes, and needs, time’ – 1986
The architects are self-admittedly a little ‘radical’; but their clients expectations and desires are ‘at centre of our investment’, they explain. ‘We bring out issues and bring effective solutions with strong architectural and heritage value.’
Founded in 2014, the firm is always aiming to grow and adapt. The biggest lesson they’ve learnt so far? ‘Architecture takes, and needs, time.’ §