IN THE Slide of 2019, the architect and designer Sophie Dries, 35, and her spouse, the sculptor Marc Leschelier, 37, moved into a two-bedroom Haussmannian condominium in Paris’s 11th Arrondissement, not much from the city’s historic Position des Vosges. For various months, they lived just about completely without the need of household furniture or household comforts, help you save for a mattress on the bed room ground — which doubled as a hangout place and residence office — and two evening meal plates. They experienced no fascination in shopping for stopgap objects and wanted to take time to acquaint them selves with the area in advance of producing it their own. “We would fully stay clear of the living area, however,” Dries claims. “It was so empty, it had an echo.”
But the couple weren’t specifically setting up with a blank slate. The 1,450-sq.-foot next-ground apartment is an archetypal 19th-century Parisian household, complete with all the trappings of the era’s refined, decorative architecture. The 10-foot-significant ceilings have ornate, botanically themed moldings the partitions are wainscoted and the flooring keep their first geometric two-tone marquetry. At the western stop of the 376-square-foot living area, there is an elaborately sculpted marble fireplace inscribed with the year of its generation, 1853, and on the adjacent wall a row of flooring-to-ceiling French windows open on to a balcony overlooking the broad, tree-lined boulevard under. The dwelling, in other text, was intended to be a luxurious backdrop for the gilded commodes and carved-leg bergères of its time. But Dries and Leschelier — who satisfied not extensive after they each graduated from the architecture software at Paris’s École des Beaux-Arts — had an solely distinctive eyesight for it. “We wished to build a clash in between this bourgeois standard Haussmannian house and modern day household furniture and suggestions,” says Dries. “We are living on the old continent, and we appreciate its sense of heritage, but we’re young — it is significant to have that paradox.”
Because FOUNDING HER namesake architecture and layout studio in 2014, Dries has designed a portfolio of household tasks in Paris — together with a minimalist penthouse on the Rue Saint-Honoré for a pair of artwork collectors and an elegantly stripped-back again two-bedroom around the Canal Saint-Martin for a young couple who get the job done in trend and tech — that every single serve as a deft portrait of their inhabitants when reflecting Dries’s possess passions in combining pure traces with wealthy textures and uncommon components. With his raw significant-scale sculptures — usually pavilion-esque concrete sorts — Leschelier equally seeks to introduce a sense of spontaneity and experimentation into the architectural process. This shared sensibility, which rejects hierarchies of old and new, form and function, is apparent all over the pair’s household. Starting in December 2019, they slowly and gradually furnished the condominium, which has a traditional circular format — a residing area and a dining room direct off an entryway, and the much more non-public rooms, including the bed room and a nursery for the couple’s 3-thirty day period-old daughter, Daria, circulation into a single a different from there — around a two-yr interval, mixing parts by designers these as Philippe Starck and Ettore Sottsass (obtained typically through Paris-based gallerists, such as Paul Bourdet and Yves and Victor Gastou) with Dries’s have handcrafted creations.
Arrangements were frequently informed by affinities that Dries or Leschelier noticed concerning seemingly unrelated items. In the dwelling space, for case in point, the pair paired a dining desk with a wavy-edged oval oak prime, and tubular rusted steel legs by Dries with a established of Starck’s ’80s-era steel Von Vogelsang chairs for Driade. A 10-by-6 1/2-foot framed print by Ryan McGinley depicting a few nude figures sprawled throughout a sand dune covers virtually the whole south wall. Dries shared visuals of the room with the British designer Max Lamb, who then developed a slablike rubber espresso table for the place in a complementary shade of peanut butter brown. The piece now sits beside a crescent-moon-shaped modular couch, made by Dries and upholstered in deep aubergine velvet, that like the ground is designed from oak but in a more up to date burled veneer.
Leschelier also contributed custom made operates to the living room: two console tables composed of metal-topped stacked cinder blocks sealed with overflowing mortar that sit on both aspect of 1 of the French home windows. Dries, way too, frequently elevates uncooked, humble factors in her follow and counts the postwar Italian Arte Povera movement, which championed every day products, and the minimalism of the French Modernist interior designer Jean-Michel Frank among her references. “Frank was a punk of his time, and I typically marvel what he’d do these days,” she suggests. For the couple’s bed room, a heat but restrained refuge outlined by earth tones and all-natural textures, she used a slap brush to implement an natural and organic, craggy white plaster complete to the tall crafted-in closets, and she experienced curtains created from about woven hessian, a fabric normally applied in upholstery. The solar-flooded dining room, adjacent to the residing space, capabilities a single of her brass Glow chandeliers, developed for the lighting corporation Kaia, whose egg-formed glass globes are topped with molded papier-mâché situations. And for the small galley kitchen area at the considerably end of the apartment, she selected a blue-grey polished concrete to protect the counter tops and flooring, a refreshing departure from the beige and white palette her clientele so frequently request.
Dries and Leschelier share an appreciation for works with a sense of humor. They are enthusiasts, for instance, of the expressive technique of the Italian designer Gaetano Pesce, and a person of his anthropomorphic, brightly coloured hand-poured resin Nobody’s Best chairs sits — around a plush purple and environmentally friendly tufted wool rug by Dries for Nilufar Gallery that evokes an otherworldly animal pelt — in the corner of the apartment’s vestibule, a hushed, jewel-box-like area where the couple’s eclectic preferences are most fully on display screen. To amplify the room’s personal, denlike experience, Dries upholstered the walls in jade green Japanese straw. Then, using inspiration from the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia — in which previous masters and personal curiosities amassed in excess of many years by the early 20th-century collector Albert C. Barnes are shown aspect by aspect — she hung some of the couple’s scaled-down-scale artworks salon-fashion throughout them. A spiritual engraving by the German Renaissance grasp Albrecht Dürer, inherited from Leschelier’s maternal grandmother, seems not significantly from a photograph of an English breakfast by the British photographer Martin Parr an engraved landscape by Dries and Leschelier’s near pal the French conceptual artist Laurent Grasso offsets a floral however daily life by the young Azerbaijani painter Niyaz Najafov. “The space has no purpose, but it is our favored,” Dries claims. “We preferred to come across an absurd way of putting issues with each other devoid of any imagined of price.”
Now that the living area no extended has an echo, the couple make whole use of it by internet hosting good friends for aperitifs. Although neither statements to be a terrific cook dinner, they equally delight in sharing a bottle of Chablis — or, when the celebration phone calls for it, a gin and tonic or two — with their liked ones, and it is in this room, far too, that they invest the most time with their daughter. But for Dries, the family’s residence is also a expert manifesto of kinds, a way to illustrate that a far more idiosyncratic dwelling place can hold fantastic allure. “My shoppers could possibly be as well afraid to do most of the factors below,” she claims. “But if they see them in the context of a common apartment, they could transform their minds.”
Image assistant: Lilly Merck