Ariel Claudet, architect, artist and stage designer.
Since 2004, ARIEL CLAUDET HAS WORKED in architecture studios in Paris, Tokyo, Los Angeles and Haiti AND In different fields including residential, commercial and public housing. His work in Tokyo at Yasutaka Yoshimura’s studio and for the Haitian government brought him expertise in post-traumatic architecture.
Separately, Ariel also worked as a stage-designer since 2012 having completed designs for music festivals, public events and gallery installations in both Paris and Kyoto. His works have been exhibited in different venues such as the Perpitch & Bringand Gallery, Paris Design Week and the Paris Art and Design (PAD)
Today he is a main collaborator @ Jakob + MacFarlane, a Paris based international aRchiTECTURe practice.
ARIEL your greatest inspirations or influences?
My greatest inspirations I find them in books, actually not in books but in everything I read, books, newspapers, pamphlet, print out webpages etc. I never read without a pen, or maybe I read with my pen. Throughout the years I developed a personal code composed of simple pictograms. Whenever I underline something I scribble one of those symbols in the margin and whenever a book is finished, I restart from the fist page and I execute the command that the pictograms signify. For example whenever there is an eye written it means it is some reference to look up for, a heart, something to learn by heart etc. but the most important one is the cross.
Whenever I see a cross I have previously drawn in a book it means whatever is underlined is meant to be copied in my 'corpus', an already hundreds pages long .doc file where all the book I have read since I have started this have long excerpts written.
It might seems a mad undertaking but it is my most vital tool. Whenever I start a project – whatever the field of work, architecture, art, writing – I print it out and I go through it all with a pair of scissors and start to cut out what is relevant for this new project.
One could read this suite of random sentences abstracted from all my books as a single piece and might understand how my thoughts are driven.
Most interesting project so far and what would be a dream project for you?
Currently, most interesting project is everything I do at Jakob + MacFarlane. As a new asset to an architecture studio that was the future in 1997 and managed to achieve a series of all unique and iconic buildings since then, I tried to bring even more freshness and innovation to that already advanced office.
The first result of my contribution to J+M is the presentation of their project in animated Augmented Reality (AR) for their first retrospective at the Aedes Architecture Forum in Berlin.
It made a boom ! everybody understood that we pushed augmented reality one step further not using it just as a fancy display to impress clients. We used AR in order to show or concepts in motion, showing that we always start from a matrices coming from an existing condition end we alter it by different external forces.
The exhibition was largely published, it is now moving from Berlin to Cologne and will soon land in another continent !
In order to experience the AR we've built an app that anyone can download on the Apple store and use the markers on our website to display our augmented models. After making this app we realized we were the only major architecture office with an app.
In 1997 with the Restaurant Georges above the Centre Pompidou Jakob + MacFarlane built the first ever architectural project initially conceived in 3D through computational tools. Now we want to go further with the AR and develop it as a conception tool.
Favorite websites, blogs or publications ( or social media handles) ?
My favorite online publication is, as many things I love, dead ! It is called Uncube magazine and previous issues are still accessible online. It is the only online magazine I had the chance to read that takes real advantage of the web media through interactive content, animations, ways to scroll the text, video add ons etc.
Other publicationS still 'alive':
- Art Press I and II
- Pamphlet architecture
How would you describe your creativity or your work?
I'll describe myself as someone that hates lies but who will spend his life fucking with the truth since art doesn't exist in what one calls 'the real world' but exists in such worlds as the imaginary world, the digital world, the oneiric world and radiates while passing through their limits.
As seductive it is, plain pure tangible truth can only refrain you from reaching the oneiric world.
In art, there is no impact without twisting the truth
Geroges Braque – Le Jour et la Nuit, Cahiers 1917 – 1952 (1952)
What Braques calls impact, Walter Benjamin calls it aura and what they talk about it is this radiation produced by something that is piercing the limit between the tangible and the dream, what exist in that ethereal non matter created by our minds combined.
Playing with this limit is what drives my production.
When lines pull out from a painting of one of my imaginary house into copper strings that build an exhibition space in Saint-Germain des Pres it is the imaginary that I make leaking into the material world.
When I paint the same house on the walls of a gallery booth in the Paris Arts and Design Salon (PAD) it is the visitors that I bring into the imaginary wolrd through this booth as an oneiric vessel.
« So profound was my longing to escape reality (…) that I evoked it even in certain plans that affected my daily life. I told Kay, for instance, that I dreamed of living with her in a house with many elements existing only in trompe-l’œil: trompe-l’œil logs would burn in a trompe-l’œil fireplace; chairs and couches would be painted on the wall, we would sit and lie on the floor, and there would be servants in effigy. The only thing that remained unformulated (and which I probably desired, moreover, very obscurely) was that the woman that lived with me in this house would also be only a trompe-l’œil woman »
Michel Leiris, Manhood, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, « folio», 1939 (p.122-23)
And when I bring some great architects ideas that exist in the digital world into the material world through an app, I enable viewers to understand that this architecture in a conceptual temporal relationship is in motion and only the tangible reality stops it. Then you understand those constructed shapes as the result of the turmoil of the same way you see a crawling plant different after watching one of those time warp video where you see it crawling, twizzling and grabbing animated by one goal, reaching higher.
How does living in Paris inspire you or the work you do?
It is more being a Parisian than living in Paris that inspires me. Its the way of life, the sacralization of meals, the hours of long drinks with random friends and strangers, the endless schedule of new exhibitions and cultural events, all that inspires me wherever I am.