There are not many venues dedicated so completely to architecture and showing this in such an impressive way like the modern neo-classical Palais Chaillot on the Seine. Following careful renovation, the world's largest Architecture Centre was opened in the building's magnificent east wing in 2007. Since then, the prestigious building has accommodated several institutions that bring historical and modern architecture and France's cultural heritage together under one roof.
The lighting design of the spacious entrance hall on the ground floor imparts this area with a clear structure, enhancing visitor orientation and centralising access to the various areas. The light lines set in the ceiling trace the main axes of the hall along the monumental columns.
The open-access library with its high-ceilinged, flowing rooms houses some 28,000 books. Jean Francois Bodin has managed, without major interference with the fabric of the building, to create a functional, contemporary library interior. The reconstructed fresco cycle from Saint Savin sur Gartempe Abbey has been set centre stage using a luminaire especially developed for this purpose. The barrel vault of the 40 m long room is flooded by warm light provided by reflectors based on the TECTON system, which have been installed above the shelves on the wall.
The impressive gallery of architecture expands across the curved room occupying the complete second floor of the wide building tract. The central exhibition area is illuminated uniformly by seven large, backlit ceiling rotundas; the lighting can be controlled to provide a variety of illuminance levels, if required.