Who is the architect behind Arkhenspaces, and what does the name of the firm mean? 

The architect behind Arkhenscpaes is Eric Cassar; he is the founder, principal design architect, and construction engineer of the firm Arkhenspaces, based in Paris, France. The location of the firm is where the founder also spent part of his early education in engineering and architecture. Moreover, the name of the firm, Arkhenspaces, derives from the philosophies that the firm follows; Arkhenspaces is a Greek prefix that stands for origin, in this case, to the nature of the architectural projects that Arkhenspaces designs. Then, “N” is a math symbol that refers to dimension, and the last part of the firm’s words is “spaces” as the medium to articulate ideas. As part of Arkhenspaces’s nature, their projects are focused on creating a design office, town planning, architecture, and development.  

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Projects ©AecCafe.

How did Arkhenspaces start, and how could architecture be innovated? 

One of Eric Cassar’s first interventions was a study on highway territory, specified on the motorways service area. After the successful completion of this study, Cassar decided to create Arkhenspaces in 2005. Since then, the firm has had an incredible trajectory on defining innovative sustainable design contemporary spaces. One of the main focuses in research has been smart building; this refers to connecting virtual environments with architecture – both physical and digital. The firm Arkhenspaces offers an architectural design that merges three crucial aspects, such as society, art, and ecology. Arkhenspaces has worked on various projects, such as cultural, educational, housing, transport, urban, and tertiary. The variety of areas that the firm covers are diverse, and some of its exemplary projects are Helsinki Museum, Productive city, Moving Pavilion 2, Villa 2, House of Arts and Culture, The Southern Star, Urban Service Station, Hong kong Cascade Gardens, Office CPM, City Interstices and Nursery school: El Nido. Finally, Arkhenspaces’s philosophy states creating architectural poetics at a human scale and new approaches for the architecture’s practice in the twentieth century. Arkhenspaces has demonstrated the dynamic methods of design and the innovative intervention of architectural metaphors. 

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Architecture as a Response to Exterior Context ©Interview
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Arkhenspaces’ Project ©Arkhenspaces

Arkhenspaces has revolutionized the concept of contemporary architecture, and through the years, the projects have reflected an architectural identity. The intervention of these firms has not been only located in France, but also, Arkhenspaces has intervened internationally; for example, Lebanon and the Netherlands. Among the firm’s most highlighted achievements is the reception of the Pierre Cardin prize awarded by the Académie des Beaux-Arts in 2010. Then, Cassar participated at a TEDx conference in Lyon, and his emphasis was in smart cities. Cassar explained the vision of “the city tomorrow.” that involves a natural element and artificial as a part of the city’s aesthetics. As a result of Cassar’s extraordinary architectural intervention in a digital era, the founder received the Great European Innovation Prize « Le Monde – Smart Cities » in 2017. Also, Eric Cassar published The Case For Subtle Ar(t)architecture. The book is a critical essay with explanations and architecture with sustainable opportunities in practice. One of the latest achievements of Cassar is his work recognized and published in “Young visionaries- the new generation of architects” by Ed Braun. The impact of Arkhenspaces in the industry has been genuinely innovative in the way spaces and active smart-buildings are conceptualized.

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Interior Spaces ©Inhabitad

The architectural firm-based in France has studied various topics that redefine spaces in architecture, and one of the research cases of the firm is architecture in motion, which is the topic of research on the multidimensional principles of architecture. This statement studies the artistic content of architecture and possibilities to change the static characteristic of spaces with perspectives. The technique to achieve a multisensorial design is on considering the term of moving architecture, and as a result, it modifies the occupant’s reference once inhabited architecture. In addition, the term “architecture in movements” does not precisely refer to architecture as a dynamic object; instead, it interacts with the observers fixed point or also known as the point of reference, which plays a fundamental role on the site. One of the fascinations of architecture in movement is its qualities of being multifaceted and its ability to respond to the dimensions of the space. However, the multisensorial effect is perceived by the site’s condition and its relation to the architectural intervention. One example is how light travels around the spaces and the way it modifies the perception of dimension, as well as how the season changes the interior conditions of a project in terms of an indoor atmosphere. Therefore, the manner of how space perception mainly depends on the occupants and the place. For that reason, the intention of the designers is a crucial component because his/her intention will modify and create a design which communicates with its surrounding. At the same time, it influences how it transforms the context of the exterior into interior spaces. The exemplary projects which apply architecture in motion are Hermès Pavilion: Moving Pavilion 2. Finally, Akhenspaces emphasizes the dynamics of the architecture and new conceptions of spaces. 

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Hermès Pavilion: Moving Pavilion 2 ©Arkhenspaces

The firm innovates the design principles on a larger scale as smart cities and its dialogue with the urban fabric, and on the smaller scales as cultural centers, such as Helsinki Museum. Moreover, Eric Cassar has documented his architectural ingenious with illustration and writing work. Cesar’s education and proficiency in architecture and engineering demonstrate an artistic and creative approach to design. As a result, the trajectory of Akhenspaces is an example of how the design modifies town planning, architecture, and development. 

Author

Andreina Sojo comes from Caracas, Venezuela. Seeking for higher education, Andreina studied in Broward College, Florida, and Seville, Spain as a recipient of the William E. Green Scholarship. Andreina graduated with honors, and she transferred to the University of Florida to complete her Bachelor's in Architecture and Minor in Landscape Architecture.

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