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Loci Anima
  Loci Anima Projects Studio News Contact Fr En
Projects Studio News Contact Fr En


Studio, Françoise Raunaud — © Loci Anima
Françoise Raunaud
Studio, Jonathan Thornhill — © Loci Anima
Jonathan Thornhill
Studio, Alexandra du Couëdic — © Loci Anima
Alexandra du Couëdic
Studio — © Loci Anima
Studio, Christian Felix — © Loci Anima
Christian Felix
Studio, Xavier Maunoury — © Loci Anima
Xavier Maunoury
Studio, Vincent Laplante — © Loci Anima
Vincent Laplante
Studio, Agnieszka Wogiel — © Loci Anima
Agnieszka Wogiel
Studio, Manabu Yamanouchi — © Loci Anima
Manabu Yamanouchi
Studio, Thomas Panconi — © Loci Anima
Thomas Panconi
Studio — © Loci Anima
Studio — © Loci Anima
Studio — © Loci Anima
Studio — © Loci Anima

loci anima is an archi­tec­ture, design and urban plan­ning stu­dio foun­ded by Françoise Raynaud in 2005. Located on the top floor of Pathé Wepler, in the sky above Place Clichy in Paris, the stu­dio has 25 archi­tects toge­ther with an office in New York, direc­ted by Jonathan Thornhill. In Latin, loci anima” lite­rally means the soul of place”: every living being, object, but also natu­ral ele­ment is ani­ma­ted by a spi­rit, a vital force, an energy. A phi­lo­so­phy that Françoise Raynaud sum­ma­rizes in three words post-indus­trial ani­mism”. Laureate of nume­rous inter­na­tio­nal com­pe­ti­tions, loci anima conceives thus buil­dings in per­ma­nent conver­sa­tion with the vege­table, spaces in town which receive plants and ani­mals and land­scapes to inha­bit.

Look at nature, that’s where your future is,” said Leonardo da Vinci. Nature inven­ted eve­ry­thing, it is our future. It does not waste, pro­duces without waste at low energy levels, and recycles itself per­ma­nently. loci anima is also ins­pi­red by it. The stu­dio creates archi­tec­tures for living, eco­no­mi­cal, prac­ti­cal, cle­ver and recy­clable; spaces desi­gned as living beings that put nature at the heart of the human eco­sys­tem. The Pont d’Issy urban quar­ter, Manhattan apart­ment buil­dings, Les Fauvettes cinema in Paris, the Alpha media library in Angoulême, the A4-Est urban quar­ter in Boulogne-Billancourt, and many other pro­jects all bear wit­ness to this.

Françoise Raynaud,
archi­tecte fon­da­trice

What defines me best is what I eat. An inve­te­rate Darwinian (given the lack of a more likely theory), I push my rejec­tion of can­ni­ba­lism in space and in time. I only eat living crea­tures that are as remote as pos­sible from our evo­lu­tio­nary chain. This means all plant life and a large num­ber of aqua­tic ani­mals when they are not a threa­te­ned spe­cies or very evol­ved, and with the excep­tion of gas­tro­pods and cepha­lo­pods to which I feel par­ti­cu­larly close (a proxi­mity which still today remains unex­plai­ned). What we eat is our social, geo­gra­phic and fami­lial his­tory, it is also the story that we want to tell and share, from the mate­rial to the ideo­logy. Architecture goes in the other direc­tion, from the ideo­logy to the mate­rial. Each pro­ject is always an oppor­tu­nity for me to push the ideas that are close to my heart: Rejection of pre­con­cei­ved ideas, sus­pi­cion of theo­ries, against pro­se­ly­ti­zing in the name of my own free­dom. Respect for nature and for all of the beings with which we share and will conti­nue to share our earth for ano­ther few bil­lion years /​but against nature when it preaches that might is right. All I’m doing is trying to live my life in har­mony with my ideas. Yet, our brains, our boxes used for thin­king and desi­gning spaces, are not irre­me­dia­bly mat­ter that needs to be fed.


Jonathan Thornhill,
part­ner archi­tect,
New York Office

Through my expe­rience of wor­king in many dif­ferent coun­tries and cultures, my energy is now essen­tially direc­ted towards our inter­na­tio­nal pro­jects and the chal­lenge of ini­tia­ting our work in NY. I seek the beauty in the detail and construc­ti­vity of a sub­ject. I have always been drawn towards making objects, be it a cera­mic bowl, woo­den box or a buil­ding. The trans­for­ma­tion of ideas and concepts into phy­si­cal mat­ter is an ama­zing pro­cess from intui­tion to being, from nothing into some­thing. We now extend this in an inverse man­ner with the preoc­cu­pa­tion of trans­for­ma­tion from a solid state to ano­ther and finally libe­ra­ting mat­ter into energy at the end of an objects phy­si­cal life, so that we don’t waste our natu­ral resources. I see our work to chan­nel and har­ness all that energy into phy­si­cal struc­tures that are desi­gned to a spe­ci­fic func­tion and have a plea­sing pro­por­tion through ana­ly­sis and design method, like in nature where all is a mat­ter of selec­tion and evo­lu­tion.


Alexandra du Couëdic,
part­ner, DGD

A gra­duate of the French Business School EDHEC, I star­ted out in the consul­ting world before moving on to com­mu­ni­ca­tion and new media. My pro­fes­sio­nal choices have always been gea­red towards unique, inno­va­tive pro­jects in the fields of sports mar­ke­ting, digi­tal tech­no­logy, and cur­rently urba­nism and archi­tec­ture. My dream was to play a role in the construc­tion of a bet­ter way of living toge­ther! I met Françoise Raynaud while wor­king on a Havas Sport pro­ject for the America’s Cup. For nearly a year, I wor­ked and lived” in her iti­ne­rant buil­ding, a recy­cled and recy­clable buil­ding desi­gned on the basis of contai­ners, scaf­fol­ding with can­vass suns­creens and com­mu­ni­ca­tions media. I was struck by the intui­tion, the inge­nuity and the auda­city of this buil­ding and the choices made the archi­tect. When Françoise Raynaud set up loci anima, 10 years ago now, I offe­red to bring my orga­ni­sa­tio­nal, mana­ge­ment and deve­lop­ment skills to this new firm. I expe­rien­ced a veri­table bap­tism by fire when I mana­ged and moni­to­red the construc­tion of the firm’s first buil­ding. Today, see­king to extend my res­pon­si­bi­li­ties, I’d like to capi­ta­lise on the know-how of loci anima and enlarge the scope of its acti­vi­ties, pro­vi­ding alter­na­tive res­ponses so that we can reinvent the city of tomor­row, a green city that is res­pect­ful and well-dis­po­sed towards nature and towards its inha­bi­tants.


Marine Bichot,
pro­ject lea­der

A gra­duate of the school of archi­tec­ture de la ville et du ter­ri­toire’, I com­ple­ted my diploma HMONP within the agency. After a suc­cess­ful inter­n­ship, I joi­ned the Loci Anima family in 2012, wor­king on pro­jects such as Angoulème’s multi-media library and the Gaumont Gobelins cinema. I per­ceive archi­tec­ture as an ele­ment ins­cri­bed into the envi­ron­ment, at the ser­vice of its users; eli­mi­na­ting the super­fluous and focus­sing on the value of the mate­rials. The sha­ring of know­ledge bet­ween the archi­tect, design schools and com­pa­nies has great signi­fi­cance in my vision of archi­tec­tu­ral qua­lity. I also love dis­co­ve­ring the dif­ferent cultures that make up our lit­tle pla­net, wan­de­ring through wide open spaces and wat­ching the night fall on couples dan­cing to the rhythm of kizomba and samba.


Christian Felix,
pro­ject lea­der

During my stu­dies at the Paris Villemin Architecture School, I joi­ned the Christian Hauvette team in which I spent more than ten years. I have been res­pon­sible for such pro­jects as the Usinor group offices, the Rector of Guyana offices, labo­ra­to­ries of the Institute of Analytical Sciences and Cemagref, and many other public com­pe­ti­tions such as the reha­bi­li­ta­tion of the Maison de Radio France. In paral­lel, I am deve­lo­ping per­so­nal eco­lo­gi­cal pro­jects, espe­cially in Normandy, a draft of which has been decla­red «win­ner of lau­rel wood construc­tion», or Egypt, where the pro­ject was publi­shed in the «100 green buil­dings» from Taschen. I joi­ned the team of Loci Anima in 2014.


Vincent Laplante,
pro­ject lea­der

Canadian-born, I stu­died archi­tec­ture in Montreal. Graduating in 1997 I set­tled in France in 1999, and first wor­ked with Jean Nouvel. I came to Loci Anima in 2010 to join the team on PPP: Ballard (Ministry of Defence) Tribunal de Grande Instance de Paris and pri­vate enter­prises like the Immeuble de Grande Hauteur d’Issy-les-Moulineaux. I am sen­si­tive to the needs of the envi­ron­ment and the appro­pria­te­ness of a building’s façade and struc­ture. As soon as I have a lit­tle free time, I seek refuge in Provence, to me the most beau­ti­ful place in the world.


Xavier Maunoury,
pro­ject lea­der

Originating from Toulouse, I arri­ved in Paris in 2004 to finish my stu­dies at l’école de Paris la Villette. At the same time I joi­ned the agency Wilmotte & Associates for 3 years. I wor­ked on inter­na­tio­nal pro­jects (hotel accom­mo­da­tion in Moscow, the International School of Geneva, urban plan­ning in Amman, Jordan…) I joi­ned Loci Anima in 2007 where I was in charge of the Angoulême multi-media Library and the Gaumont Pathé cine­mas ( Gaumont Ambassade et Gaumont Gobelins). Passionate about the theatre, as a spec­ta­tor, the stage has now become my second «TV»…


Agnieszka Wogiel,
pro­ject lea­der

Originating from Poland, I arri­ved in France to study archi­tec­ture at ESA then at ENSAPB. Since 2007 I have wor­ked on a mixed port­fo­lio of many dif­ferent pro­jects: (hou­sing, com­mer­cial, and indus­trial) in France, Belgium, Poland and Russia, as well as the Archives Nationales de France pro­ject at Massimiliano Fuksas. Since I arri­ved at Loci Anima in 2010, I have col­la­bo­ra­ted on dif­ferent agency pro­jects and since 2011 have been in charge of the Koala and DNA towers at Issy les Moulineaux. Fascinated by the fusion of the arts, I split my time bet­ween archi­tec­ture and pain­ting.


Manabu Yamanouchi,
pro­ject lea­der

After gra­dua­ting in Architecture in Japan in 2002, I first wor­ked a year in France for Architecture Studio and then a year in Japan at Tadamasa KANO work­shop. I retur­ned to France in 2004 to get my degree at the Paris Val de Seine School of archi­tec­ture. I met Francoise Raynaud at this time. For the last 10 years I have wor­ked mainly on the design phase in deve­lo­ping data volumes in 3D and 2D. Sometimes I do detai­led stu­dies in 3D. As a Japanese archi­tect, I would love it if one day the agency could have some pro­jects over there. In the mean­time, as an ama­teur sports­man I play rugby in Paris…in a Japanese team!