Es gibt Wohnungen, die sind so inspirierend, dass es fast weh tut. Judiths Wohnung gehört zweifelsfrei dazu. Sie lebt mit ihrem Mann und drei Katzen in einer alten Fabrik in Frankreich: im Studio Sapique. Das alte Industriegebäude wurde in den 1960er Jahren von dem Architekten Claude André für die Firma Sapic (Société d’Application de Procédés Industriels et Chimiques) gebaut. Es liegt an einem Kai, französisch: quai. So entstand der Name Sapique, der zugleich ein kleines Wortspiel ist: ‚ça pique‘ bedeutet ‚es pikst‘.
Als er das heutige Zuhause von Judith & Family entwarf, standen Herrn André unverkennbar die großen Architekten der Moderne – Mies van der Rohe und Le Corbusier – Pate. Viel Stahl, Beton und riesige Fenster mit Blick ins Grün. Ein Traum von einem Zuhause! Ich habe Judith virtuell besucht; in ihrem gelben Esszimmer mit Blick ins frische Frühlingsgrün haben wir uns über die Geschichte des Studio Sapique, über Judiths Liebe zu Grünpflanzen und ihre nächste Baupläne unterhalten. Viel Spaß beim Lesen (heute Englisch) und vor allem Schauen!
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There are apartments that are so inspiring that it almost hurts. Judith’s apartment is without no doubt one of it. Together with her husband and three cats she lives in an old factory in France: the Studio Sapique. The old industrial building was built in the 1960s by architect Claude André for the company Sapic (Société d‘ Application de Procédés Industriels et Chimiques). It is located on a wharf (French: quai). So the name Sapique was formed, who is also a small play on words: ‚ça pique‘ means ‚it pricks‘.
When he designed the home of Judith and her family, Mr. André were obviously inspired by the great modernist architects Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier. Lots of steel, concrete and huge windows. A dream of a home! I have virtually visited Judith; sitting together in her yellow dining room we have talked about the history of the Studio Sapique, about Judith’s love for plants and her next plans. Enjoy reading and especially looking!
My name is Judith de Graaff, I’m a 33-year old Dutch graphic designer and I live in France with my husband and 3 cats.
You live in a gorgeous industrial building from the 60s, designed by French architect Claude André. How did you find it?
On a Sunday walk along the river side, we walked passed by this industrial building and it was love at first sight. We were intrigued by the laboratory that we saw through the (huge!) windows and the concrete and huge metal beams of the façade. It was abandoned but not for sale, but we finally ended up buying the entire building and started the renovations.
What is the history of the building?
Studio Sapique, as we like to call our building, was designed and built in the early 1960s by Claude André. It was designed as an office building and laboratory for a factory that treated chemicals like polymers and was largely inspired by Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier. The staircase is a unique piece of craftsmanship and was built on location. There used to work up to 70 people at this site until activities ceased in 2001. We first saw the building in 2002 and moved in in 2004. There was no water, electricity or heating, so there was a lot of work to do. The first 7 winters were really tough without proper heating, but it was worth it: we are very happy here. Our home is far from perfect, as we did all the renovations ourselves, but it has been (and still is!) one big adventure.
The building is 550m2. Do you use the whole space? If yes, how do you use it?
Almost the entire place is „in use“, although our main living area is our apartment on the first floor. Downstairs is the greenhouse that I use to grow my plants, our hallway and offices. Half of the first floor is our apartment, the other half is: my atelier, a storage room for all tools and machines, my husband’s office, his workplace, a toy room, an extra guest room and the former laboratory that’s mainly for storage. It has the size of a large Parisian apartment (almost 100m2) and we haven’t made up our minds about what we’ll do there: an exhibition space, an indoor campsite, an independent apartment…
You are co-host of the Urban Jungle Bloggers together with Igor. How do you come up with that idea?
Igor and I are both passionate about plants and we started talking about how we could share our love for greens with more readers and other bloggers. Adding greens to your home is easy, very rewarding and makes your home more alive and happy. We decided to call it Urban Jungle Bloggers and each month we create a blogpost around a specific theme. In February our topic was „1 plant, 3 stylings“ and a lot of bloggers joined us and shared their stylings on their blogs too. More than 100 stylings were created and it was great fun to see so much green creativity all around! You can join us right here. We hope you’ll be with us in March, Indre!
What are your next plans and projects?
Next on our renovation list is a new bathroom. When we arrived we installed a simple shower cabin in one of the rooms, but we have been dreaming of a real bathroom for years now. I even created a Pinterest board with the most perfect bathrooms ever. We recently bought our floor tiles and are planning to start building it very soon.
What are your favorite places in France and in the Netherlands?
Our home in France is my favorite place, although I really love the South of France (Var and Vaucluse). We were married there and it smells so good. I also love wandering around Paris, or go on a little trip through my region, the Oise. In the Netherlands my favorite place is my family home. Not far from there, I discovered this art gallery and concept store, called Outspoken, at the end of last year. Warmly recommended!
Where do you want to travel next?
In less than a month I’ll be in Italy with a group of blogger friends. But London, Spain, Portugal, Morocco and Tel Aviv are also on my travel-wishlist. Oh and I also really want to go back to Iceland. But we’ll see where 2014 will take me 😉