We’d like to take the opportunity to introduce you to the winners of the Honorable mention of our “Paris Affordable Housing Challenge” competition - Yoan La Selva, Adrien La Selva, Damien Fraulob and Sisley Carnus from France!
Team SQAD from France
SQUAD is an architectural firm founded in Paris in 2016 by Faustine Bertrand, Sisley Carnus and Yoan La Selva. Three architects, three generations brought together to meet, exchange, develop and build projects together: an experience that has generated a strong desire to bring our personalities together and explore a shared vision of architecture. In 2019, SQUAD expanded its skills and expertise by bringing in two new architects, Damien Fraulob and Adrien La Selva.
We develop architecture on different scales and programs, from the design of a townhouse to public facilities or large-scale urban projects. SQUAD's architecture is the result of a creative approach that combines innovation and pragmatism. It is rational, sober and contemporary.
SQUAD creates a contextual architecture that is part of a process capable of prioritizing the issues raised by the site, the program, the economic, social and cultural, political and environmental issues.
We demand an architecture that seeks the right answer, without compromise. An architecture that conveys meaning and imprints the memory and emotions of users in reality.
SQUAD explores the different degrees of intimacy that shape our lives and cities. Between the inside and the outside, the individual and the world.
For SQUAD there are no projects without the desire to write a history of architecture together.
Brief information about the projects that you/your company have been involved with. For instance what scale have you focused on/preferred, any significant projects where company/ individuals have been involved?
We develop architecture on different scales and programs: from the design of a townhouse to public facilities or large-scale urban projects.
SQUAD's architecture is the result of a creative approach that combines innovation and pragmatism. It is rational, sober and contemporary.
What does architecture mean to you and what is the role of an architect in your society?
“Ce n’est pas dans je ne sais quelle retraite que nous nous découvrirons : c’est sur la route, dans la ville, au milieu de la foule, chose parmi les choses, hommes parmi les hommes.” Jean Paul Sartre
"It is not in some retreat that we will discover ourselves: it is on the road, in the city, in the midst of the crowd, things among things, men among men." Jean Paul Sartre
The city is the place which translates into interactions in the same place of a larger or smaller group of people, it is made up of two, of a union of traits that constantly bring intimacy and urbanity into resonance.
For us, the term intimacy refers both to a feeling and a state of mind, but it also serves to define the character of a space. The spatiality of a place has a more or less intimate character and thus lends itself to our mental disposition.
What is the relationship that the individual or a group of individuals has with others? While the notion of urbanity is a characteristic of human beings, intimacy is a cultural value. From a spatial point of view, these features of union between the individual and others are located not only between the project and its environment but also within the architecture itself.
Sight, hearing, smell and touch capture the space you are in and determine the boundary between two universes. The passage of air, from shadow to light, the contact between people in different spaces are all elements that allow us to feel this demarcation more or less. The sounds and perfumes generated by each other, the position of visibility in which everyone is, seeing without being seen, seeing and being seen or being seen without seeing the one who is watching us are part of these elements in interaction with the sphere of intimacy.
The balance between solitude and contact, private and urbanity, is achieved at different levels that we distinguish in our practice of architecture.
The life course of men and women is constantly confronted with these degrees of interaction, the notions of reside, living and working all refer to different degrees of confidences, to spheres of sharing, which are connected through architecture, constructing and drawing links between intimacy and urbanity. SQUAD is interested in these notions, the ones that shape our lives and cities.
Why do you participate in architecture vision competitions?
For us, each competition is an opportunity to carry out research work and to question ourselves on society and the city. It is an opportunity to work on innovative themes that go beyond traditional consultations/building competitions.
What advice would you give to individuals who struggle to decide whether it would be beneficial for them to participate in architecture vision competitions?
If architecture is your passion then there are no more questions to ask. It is important for the construction of your architecture, your discourse to practice on as many subjects as possible. You have to feed your imagination and confront the design process.
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