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Jean Prouvé
Bouqueval school, 1949
Jardin des Tuileries
Paris, Oct. 18 - 27, 2016

On the occasion of the FIAC, Galerie Patrick Seguin is pleased to present the Jean Prouvé Bouqueval School in the Louvre and Tuileries National Estate from October 18th to 27th. After making temporary and demountable houses for war victims in Lorraine at the end of World War II, the Ateliers Jean Prouvé committed to the French government’s reconstruction program, involving not only housing, but also infrastructure, notably schools. Prouvé saw prefabrication as the optimal technical and economic solution to the postwar situation. He perfected a system he had patented in 1939 and then improved during the War, featuring a metal skeleton using axial portal frames, combined with various modular facade panels. This construction principle was Prouvé’s response to the Ministry of Education’s 1949 competition for “a mass-producible one-room rural school with teacher accommodations.” The specifications called for buildings that could be easily mass-produced with quick and easy assembly on any kind of site. The Ateliers Jean Prouvé was among the winners of the competition and in May 1950 was given an order for two prototype units: one for the small municipality of Bouqueval, near Paris, and the other requested by parliamentarian Raymond Mondon for the village of Vantoux, near Metz. Galerie Patrick Seguin asked Ateliers Jean Nouvel / HW Architecture to consult on the development and setting up of the Bouqueval School. This adaptation, designed in harmony with the existing materials, allows for full appreciation of Jean Prouvé’s structural system.