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The French artists Christophe Berdaguer and Marie Péjus have recently converted an old house with quite a history into something that is both startlingly new, and yet oddly reminiscent of a Gaudi past. The ‘new’ building, called Gue(ho)st House by the artists, in its next life will become a visitor’s centre for the Synagogue de Delme Contemporary Art Centre, with a ground floor reception centre for school children and visitors to the Centre plus a documentation and information centre. The upper floor is host to a studio accommodating artists, interns, students and other professionals.

Arch2o-Gue(ho)st House-Christophe Berdaguer + Marie Péjus (3)

Christophe Berdaguer + Marie Péjus

Now that we’ve gotten the programmatic details out of the way, we can get to the really interesting stuff- the exterior. This is the startlingly new bit mentioned above. The building appears to be made of a sort of hand-formed concrete. However, this is merely an illusion- it is instead composed of the original base house- which was at points in its past a prison house, a school, and a funeral parlour- and is cloaked in a much lighter, all together unexpected material: a new skin of polystyrene coated and sealed in resin and painted white.

Arch2o-Gue(ho)st House-Christophe Berdaguer + Marie Péjus (1)

Courtesy of Christophe Berdaguer + Marie Péjus

The artists drew upon the theme of the house with it’s previous lives in conceiving the scheme with it’s ghost-like appearance.

Courtesy of Christophe Berdaguer + Marie Péjus

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