Fading History: Ramy Fischler Transforms An Art Deco Apartment Into A Contemporary Pied-à-terre

published in: Interiors By Kiri Spirou, 17 January 2014

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Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Designer Ramy Fischler’s firm RF Studio has recently completed the refurbishing of a duplex apartment in a listed building on Place de Colombie, in Paris’ 16th arrondissement, France. Boasting its own garden and street entrance, this exceptional pied-à-terre is situated in the 1930’s Art Deco residential complex known as the ‘Walter Buildings’ (named after its architect Jean Walter). Like a skilful magician, Fischler’s artful transformation combines traditional elements with forward-thinking design interventions, creating a multilayered interior that reinvents the apartment’s history and original aesthetic, firmly rooting it into the present day, as a result.

On the residence’s upper level, the main living area, i.e. the living room, dining room and master bedroom occupy the front windowed part, while the remainder of the living spaces (walk-in wardrobe, kitchen, bathroom and water closet for guests) are situated at the back. This back-front dichotomy is reflected in the design aesthetic as well: the existing parquet de Versailles and period woodwork on the walls have both been preserved in the front rooms, while more contemporary materials have been used in those found in the rear. A staircase in the living room (its iron-wrought period railing have also been preserved) leads down to the lower level, which has been arranged as a guest suite. This space enjoys garden views and relative independence, with its own sitting area, bedroom, bathroom and walk-in closet.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Layering contrasts is perhaps the main tenet that runs through the apartment’s overall design concept, and examples of it are numerous: spectacular curtains made of lacquered plaster cover the entry hall walls and walk-in wardrobe, while prints of Baroque-era paintings have been applied on mirrors and other surfaces, some of which conceal closets, not to mentions a secretary desk. And in what is perhaps the residence’s most dramatic feature, white custom epoxy paint has been applied, by hand, on the woodwork in the living room and dining area to create a fading out effect, as if the ceiling is descending into the wall like a mist - with smoky bronzed mirrors in the dining room adding even more to the overall effect.

For Ramy Fischler, interior design should promote concepts such as creativity, experimentation and craftsmanship which is the reason why he likes to treat each and every project he undertakes as an opportunity to collaborate with other experts and try out new things. ''The Place de Colombie apartment,'' he says, ''is the result of a group of ideas and talents coming together as one.  For me, designing an apartment or house is like running a research laboratory, during which different expertise comes together in order to produce a singular piece that is the result of a collaborative process.'' This project clearly demonstrates the experimental and creative nature of Fischler’s work, for which he has designed a whole line of bespoke furniture, including the living room sofas and table, sleeping beds and more.

Belgian designer Ramy Fischler founded RF Studio in 2010. Prior to that, he was the exclusive partner of architect Patrick Jouin for nearly nine years. He lives and works in Paris.

In the main living room, the bespoke leather and cotton sofas and lacquered-wood coffee table with marble plates have been designed by Fischler. The area rug is also custom-made.
Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

The master bedroom. Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Strategically placed Calacatta marble in the master bathroom distorts perspective and proportion, creating a kaleidoscopic optical illusion.
Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine..

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

The flooring in the walk-in wardrobe changes from the preserved parquet de Versailles to a clear resin-covered paved floor engraved with the same pattern, thus balancing the old with the new.
Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Framed Dutch silk-screens on wood decorate the lounge area in the guest suite, concealing a foldable secretary desk and a closet.
Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Curtains made of lacquered plaster cover the walls of the main entrance; the curtains’ pleats were hand-drawn by Fischler and then molded by an expert team of artisans. The painted mirror on the wall conceals a coat closet.
Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

White lacquered wood panels separated by natural-finish oak strips create a futuristic feel in the corridor and kitchen areas.
Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

In the kitchen’s more private dining area, table and chairs by Knoll are complemented by a Murano Due bubble chandelier designed by Patrick Jouin.
Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

Photo © Paul Graves for AD Magazine.

The making of the woodwork in the living room. Photo © RF Studio.

The making of the lacquered plaster curtains. Photo © RF Studio.

sources:

RF Studio, Interior Design

  • friend
    Amsellem | 2014-01-17 23:23:36

    I would Like to receive information in my gallery at 48 rue du roi de sicile 75004 Paris.Best regards. Vera Amsellem

  • friend
    Judi Easley | 2014-02-01 07:30:21

    Wow! A fantastic article with details galore! The photos are spectacular! I can see how this would stop you in your tracks! I want to go poke in all the nooks and crannies to find all the secrets!

  • friend
    Keyna | 2014-02-01 17:32:08

    The marble shown in the bathroom is Carrara, not Calacatta.

  • friend
    G.salkimis | 2014-02-06 18:54:24

    this is a design masterpiece..... !!!!

  • friend
    Maria Sourmelis | 2014-02-13 08:06:01

    Yatzer says the truth in his interview. He lets us travel and dream by what his camera captures globally. A watchful inventive eye!!! Thank you Yatzer for showing us what goes on around the world.

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