Glass site of Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture

© Iwan Baan

Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Exterior photography, WindowsSite Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Interior photography, WindowsSite Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Outdoor photography, FacadeSite Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Interior photography, Stairs+ 21

Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Exterior photography, Windows
© Iwan Baan

Text description provided by the architects. Hidden in the bucolic landscape of the Parc Naturel des Vosges du Nord, the Site Verrier de Meisenthal is an active state-funded cultural center in a historic glass factory dating from the 18th century.

Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Interior photography, Windows
© Iwan Baan
Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Image 11 of 21
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Three independent but interdependent institutions: the glass museum (Musée du Verre et du cristal), a living memory retracing the history of glass on the site; the CIAV (Centre International d’Art Verrier) – an international glass art center where traditional craftsmanship meets contemporary practices; and the Cadhame (Halle verrière) – a multidisciplinary cultural space hosting art installations, happenings and concerts are located on different ground levels. Our intervention brings them together to define a contemporary institutional identity in dialogue with an industrial heritage.

Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Exterior photography, Windows, Facade
© Iwan Baan
Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Outdoor photography, Facade
© Iwan Baan
Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Image 15 of 21
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An undulating cast-in-place concrete surface alludes to the production of glass by uniting the buildings. The surface functions as a roof, a ceiling and a wall, connecting the ground floors of the buildings to frame a public plaza. New functions are sensitively introduced below and on this surface, including offices, workshops, a café and a restaurant.

Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Outdoor photography, Facade
© Iwan Baan
Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Exterior photography, Windows, Facade
© Iwan Baan
Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Image 12 of 21
Floor plan
Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Outdoor photography, Facade
© Iwan Baan

The building’s existing functions are reimagined and expanded: the factory hall features a new entrance over a previously unused basement and a 500-seat black box theater that can be reconfigured into a theater with standing room for 700 or open as a concert hall for 3,000 people. .

Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Interior photography, Stairs
© Iwan Baan

The new public space reinforces the civic awareness of the historic site and also introduces a very flexible venue for open-air theater, concerts and seasonal festivities.

Site Verrier de Meisenthal / SO-IL + FREAKS Architecture - Exterior photography, Facade, Windows, Arch
© Iwan Baan

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