Shelf Life

written by:
photos by:
January 4, 2010
Originally published in Make It New!

Though he appears to live alone, this graphically inclined Parisian commissioned an apartment that deftly houses his many roommates—scores of beloved comics—as well.

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  • 
  Mathieu Vinciguerra reads in front of his apartment’s signature storyboard shelves.
    Mathieu Vinciguerra reads in front of his apartment’s signature storyboard shelves.
  • 
  H2O Architectes used curvy cutouts in the space’s central column to draw the eye around its corners. A clever recessed cupboard conceals the TV screen. Comics, clearly, are everywhere.
    H2O Architectes used curvy cutouts in the space’s central column to draw the eye around its corners. A clever recessed cupboard conceals the TV screen. Comics, clearly, are everywhere.
  • 
  In a 21st-century homage to both the compartmentalization of Hausmann-era interiors and graphic novels, the apartment features dozens of boxy shelves, highlighted by saturated colors. The motif also optimizes the small space as a drawing table folds away to reveal a shoe closet.
    In a 21st-century homage to both the compartmentalization of Hausmann-era interiors and graphic novels, the apartment features dozens of boxy shelves, highlighted by saturated colors. The motif also optimizes the small space as a drawing table folds away to reveal a shoe closet.
  • 
  The shoe closet.
    The shoe closet.
  • 
  The living room is cozy, but large enough to seat a few friends.
    The living room is cozy, but large enough to seat a few friends.
  • 
  The dining room.
    The dining room.
  • 
  The largest appliances are clustered around the apartment’s plumbing core, which abuts the kitchen and bathroom.
    The largest appliances are clustered around the apartment’s plumbing core, which abuts the kitchen and bathroom.
  • 
  To create a sense of visual connection, Vinciguerra and Santiard set a colored window between the two rooms. They spent days making sure that the green transparency would meld nicely with the shade of green on the kitchen shelves.
    To create a sense of visual connection, Vinciguerra and Santiard set a colored window between the two rooms. They spent days making sure that the green transparency would meld nicely with the shade of green on the kitchen shelves.
  • 
  The bathroom, before renovation.
    The bathroom, before renovation.
  • 
  By the bed, the shelving pattern is meant to suit Vinciguerra’s tendency to read several comics and graphic novels at once.
    By the bed, the shelving pattern is meant to suit Vinciguerra’s tendency to read several comics and graphic novels at once.
  • 
  A puzzle of MDF and plywood created built-in shelving on almost every wall, which was then intensively finished with laminates and paints.
    A puzzle of MDF and plywood created built-in shelving on almost every wall, which was then intensively finished with laminates and paints.
  • 
  The shelving, in progress.
    The shelving, in progress.
  • 
  H2O gutted the apartment, doing away with all the unnecessary bits, including moldings.
    H2O gutted the apartment, doing away with all the unnecessary bits, including moldings.
  • 
  Though he appears to live alone, this graphically inclined Parisian commissioned an apartment that deftly houses his many roommates—scores of beloved comics—as well. Photo by Céline Clanet. 

    Though he appears to live alone, this graphically inclined Parisian commissioned an apartment that deftly houses his many roommates—scores of beloved comics—as well. Photo by Céline Clanet. 

  • 
  A simple poster with bold colors adds to the industrial character of this Paris abode. Photo by Céline Clanet. 
    A simple poster with bold colors adds to the industrial character of this Paris abode. Photo by Céline Clanet.
     
  • 
  Utilities, such as the radiators, were recessed from view.
    Utilities, such as the radiators, were recessed from view.
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