Jean Nouvel’s artwork follows the tradition of philosophic architects who consider design as a holistic practice to be practiced at any scale. His professional practice sees no difference between the design of a chair and the design of a building. He conceives each idea as a complete creative process.
HIGHLIGHT: JEAN NOUVEL
In Nouvel’s own words, “My interest has always been in an architecture which reflects the modernity of our epoch as opposed to the rethinking of historical references. My work deals with what is happening now—our techniques and materials, what we are capable of doing today.”
‘I believe the architect is a man who says something.’
The Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, Minnesota .
The Pritzker Jury says of the Guthrie, “The iconic Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, Minnesota both merges and contrasts with its surroundings. It is responsive to the city and the nearby Mississippi River, and yet, it is also an expression of theatricality and the magical world of performance.”
That “theatricality” is no accident. Nouvel has often compared his role as architect to that of the film director. In an interview published in El Croquis in 2002, he said, “Everything is theatrical. I have worked for a long time as a scenographer, even on social housing … scenography is the relationship between objects and matter that we want to display to somebody who is watching. In effect, in every building there is a way of proving a three-hundred-and-sixty degree view over the landscape, as in Lucerne. The use of the word scenography doesn’t bother me as long as it is used in the right sense.” In other interviews, he has often said that architecture and the cinema are very close.
Gallo-roman Museum Vesuna
The archaeological site of the Domus des Bosquets is the tangible illustration of the town buried underground which gave birth to Perigueux. The site needs to be revealed and protected with magnanimity, tact, clarity, and culture, by the means of architecture which would have the formidable privilege of residing next to ancient ghosts.
The relationship of history with modernity is an architectural source of great poetry on the condition of being frank, sensitive and right within the legitimate act of building. A metaphysical dimension is born of the vertiginous gap between two fragments of the real confronted in the space of a few meters and in the time of a couple thousand years. Conscious of the risks of the situation, he proposed the simplest observation structure of protecting and revealing.
An Endless Tower,Paris
The Esthetics of a Double Disappearing Act: AN ENDLESS TOWER
The human mind is obsessed with infinity. Fascinated.
It’s on a never-ending metaphysical quest: where did it begin? where will it end?
The tower is a metaphysical object.
It’s a question about limits.
The usual answers of architecture are all too familiar: the important points in a tower are the base and the cut-off point of the top floors…
American architects know this…
The proposal set out here is based on erasing the limits and opting instead for an expression of vertical tension that’s conceptually infinite.
The proposed tower is endless:
It disappears into the ground…
It disappears into the sky.
For the Pritzker jury, that project’s importance was “the building’s skin, which changed materials as it progressed upward—from granite to aluminum to stainless steel to glass—becoming increasingly diaphanous before disappearing into the sky.”
Philarmonie de Paris
In the word “philharmony”, one can already easily imagine the love of harmony. We play successive harmonies, urban harmonies. The Philharmonie exists as a prestigious event which maintains harmonious relations with the Parc de La Villette, the Cité de la Musique and the Boulevard Périphérique.
European Patent Office ( EPO )
The Hague, Rotterdam, large ports where large ships line up on the maritime horizons. Large international ships always loaded with mysteries…
The EPO site in The Hague, at Patentlaan 2 in Rijswijk represents the characteristic of polders with the horizontality of a petrified sea. And the tallest buildings line up their silhouettes too like boats on the water. The situation calls for a proposition which reveals its character, the eternal question of the genius of the place. The poetics of the situation born from the immensity of this strictly horizontal territory which distances the horizons, extends an endless sky. The desire is born to be in the air, to float in this emptiness, in the thickness of the air, spray, mist of rain, under the white clouds or in the blue of a sky without a ceiling …
Louvri, Abu Dhabi
All climates like exceptions. Warmer when it is cold. Cooler in the tropics. People do not resist thermal shock well. Nor do works of art. Such elementary observations have influenced the Louvre Abu Dhabi. It wishes to create a welcoming world serenely combining light and shadow, reflection and calm. It wishes to belong to a country, to its history, to its geography without becoming a flat translation, the pleonasm that results in boredom and convention. It also aims at emphasizing the fascination generated by rare encounters.
It is both a calm and complex place. A contrast amongst a series of museums that cultivate their differences and their authenticities.
It is a project founded on a major symbol of Arab architecture: the dome. But here, with its evident shift from tradition, the dome is a modern proposal.