Pavillon Seroussi, Paris, Paris, 2007
The Seroussi Pavilion is conceived as a single storey glass house that encloses a “heart of brick”. This masonry core, consisting of a series of curvilinear, digitally fabricated brick walls, creates a direct dialog with the hand crafted masonry of André Bloc’s neighboring Habitacles.
The role of these brick walls is dual: they provide the structural core of the building, supporting the cantilever of the roof on all sides, while constituting a complex spatial device. Their concave sides create a generous enfilade of varying spaces which unfurls along the glass facade of the pavilion, generating multiple views of the surrounding park and beyond to Paris. On the convex side, the walls combine to form an introverted central core which contains the building’s infrastructure: kitchen, sanitary and storage rooms as well as a space for viewing video art.
The core is covered by a concrete roof that is “draped” over the walls, creating a complex, double curved surface. A series of individually oriented skylights puncture this surface, channeling proper lighting where necessary and providing selective views of the Habitacle tower and surrounding trees. Seen from the Habitacle tower, this sculpted, perforated roof constitutes a fifth façade, revealing the building’s internal forms and organization.
The material of the brick is chosen as a reference to André Bloc’s work. Digital fabrication with an industrial robotic arm allows for an infinite variety of form and articulation: the rotation and position of each individual brick can be different. The walls are programmed, written as a continuous “script”. Their curves are irregular, non-standard, their surfaces are alternately transparent, solid, expressive or calm.
Gramazio Kohler Architects, Zurich
Client: Natalie Seroussi
Collaborators: Tobias Bonwetsch (project lead), Georg Krummenacher, Daniel Lütolf, Susanne Mocek, Thomas Summermatter, Miriam Weber, David Ritz
Selected experts: vi.vo.architecture.landscape (landscale architecture)