Mass markets

Since 2009, the Seine-Saint-Denis County Council has been backing “la Culture et l’Art au Collège (CAC)”. This project is based to a large extent on the presence in class for several weeks (40h) of an artist or scientist whose mission is to engage the students in a process of research and creation. 

 

Tutors: Sonia Leclercq, Mathilde Jauvin/ architects.

Project manager: Mathieu Marion 

 

Objectives: 
How do architects design shopping centres? What criteria are used to define the architectural qualities of these mass markets? What is the link between architecture and mass marketing? Can we imagine new forms, new volumes or spaces for such places?
The classes worked with an architect to understand the architectural concepts behind this type of construction by extending them and finding ways round them. They then played with the rules and codes to design their own shopping "utopia".

Workshop:
First stage: work with the architect to understand how spaces shape collective habits, especially buying habits, how they permit or prevent certain behaviours. They interviewed some of the customers and employees of these shopping centres. Going to a shopping centre to buy things has become so commonplace that users could easily list the strategies that characterise such places.

On the basis of this survey, the pupils started to design their own shopping centre, coming up with outlandish, funny, excessive, crazy ideas.

Three sessions on architectural practices followed: 2-D and 3-D drawing, models and description. All the characteristics of the volumes and areas in the shopping centre (dimensions, proportions, lighting, etc) and the organisation of the spaces had to be designed. The pupils brought together objectives and constraints, observations and sketches, creativity, knowledge and technical know-how: they selected, measured, put to scale, cut out, pasted, coloured in, and gave volume and shape to the final project.

Outcome:
Each class presented its project with a selection of models, images and drawings; texts located the centres in the urban context.
The groups presented their projects to the school community, explaining their features; a 20-page booklet on aspects of the project was distributed to the school community and the project partners.

 

Outings (selection):
- CITÉ DE L’ARCHITECTURE ET DU PATRIMOINE, EXHIBITION OF ARCHITECTURE THROUGH THE CENTURIES.
- VISIT TO THE ARCHITECTURAL PRACTICE DES CLIQUES ET DES CALQUES.
- CITY WALK: NATIONAL LECTURER, AURÉLIE ERLICH, TOOK THE PUPILS ON A WALK THROUGH THE CITY TO SEE THE DEPARTMENT STORES DEAR TO ÉMILE ZOLA.
- VISIT TO THE PAVILLON DE L’ARSENAL IN PARIS.

Participating schools:
- Class de (5th7 SEGPA), Collège Robespierre, Épinay-Sur-Seine.
- Class (6th7 SEGPA), Collège Le Clos-Saint-Vincent, Noisy-le-Grand.
- Class (3rdDP), Collège Henry IV, Vaujours.

 

Photo : PIERRE ANTOINE

Mass markets
Mass markets