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This house is designed for a choreographer; someone whose life is centred around dance, who is sensitive to movement in space, rhythm and light – all of which are essential elements of his day-to-day experience.

When we first met our client he did not have a definite idea of how his house should be but revealed a desire to live within flowing spaces, saturated with daylight – a place in which he could express himself and dance with his family.

The site for the house is an existing building within the oldest part of Marseille’s conservation area. The challenge for us was to balance the constraints imposed by this context with the client’s requirement for flexible internal spaces.

The resulting design articulates the house around an internal courtyard, creating a new source of light and air in addition to the small openings of the retained street elevations. Integrated into their historical context, the house’s sober façades belie interior spaces filled with surprises and subtleties.

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