Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
JC CARRIERE THEATER in Montpellier, France by A+Architecture
May 3rd, 2016 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: A+Architecture
The Domaine of O, departmental domain of art and culture, is an exceptional place that combines history and modernity, nature and culture. Before anything else it is a place shaped by History that maintains its finery to the South of the site, its beautiful flowerbeds and its original plant species, a testimony of history, that of the famous “folies héraultaises”. At no point was it about contemplating a glorious past, keeping it and simply fixing it. On the contrary we envisionned a place turned towards the future, and what better way to testify our confidence in the future than building a cultural facility of this kind?
The challenge was for us to build a box paying tribute to the art of theater, and because culture is an essential element in the development of society and citizens we wanted it to be both a sign and a manifesto of the sustainable development that we are calling for.
The result masterfully orchestrated by the firm A+Architecture and taken by all partners of this bet, has lived up to our expectations. A delicate net, reminding this tutelary figure of popular theater that was Harlequin, dresses a theater built with recyclable materials like the omnipresent certified PEFC wood PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification), a theater provided with an ultra efficient insulation system, which uses only LED lighting.
Configuration brings the audience to the stage and its modularity allows all artistic and cultural expressions, as we do throughout the Herault area, aware that if the Culture is one, cultural expressions are multiple and that Culture and in order to avoid drying it, should be receptive to all cultural disciplines.
Here in this theater, that we wanted to be under the patronage of Jean-Claude Carrière, because of what he bequeathed to the cultural heritage, but also because of what his son of the Republic journey means, from Colombières Orb to Ulm street, from the primary school named after him to the recognition he has today, we can measure his devotion and commitment to public causes. Institutions’ commitment as well, in particular at the Department, invests in the future because we agree with Patrice Chéreau when he says “the future is desire, not fear,” we think about developping infrastructures dedicated to the sustainable development of citizens and society and eventually to support the social development in freedom, equality and fraternity.
A new theatre has opened its doors in Montpellier now, at the Domaine d’O.
Where there once was wooded land, now is a building. Where space was open, now it is closed. Opening a place means closing another. Artists will work there during the time of creation when they are most vulnerable. This place will protect them when metamorphosing and giving birth to a transfigured body, the way insects go to moult.
During these times, space protects the body, like a second skin. Thus recquiring intimacy, calm, rigor and being able to link together the artist who is inside and the audience that is outside…
It is neither a private home, nor a passage way.
The act of art with with ecstasy and journeys: being out of ourself, transfering to another body, transfering to another place. The encounter with the artist is a celebration, and the place is part of that celebration: its volumes, shadows, resonances, its architectural identity. A place to meet, inside and public places.
Both the art and the audiance are forces everyone can secretly understand. There ain’t no recipe. The magic of how an architect sees its city, its country and the pieces of art remains.
In some theatre, we feel welcome in someone else’s vision. Then one can see a community of men, a community of characters stealthily meeting with each other. These theaters become places of traffic between what is visible and what cannot be seen.