malka architecture channels art nouveau for french embassy extension in vienna

Oct 14, 2021

studio malka architecture unveils its nature-inspired overhaul of the french embassy in vienna, austria. situated on 2 technikerstraße, the embassy currently occupies two art nouveau-style buildings from the 20th century. the brief for malka architecture is to refurbish both units and add a vertical extension to one that is both modern and respectful of the site’s history.

for the vertical extension, malka architecture pays tribute to art nouveau aesthetics with a roof of modular, organic-shaped protrusions. described by the architect as a ’21st-century art nouveau project’, the nature-inspired forms are not only decorative, but they also serve a purpose as circular light cannons. these light cannons collect, amplify, and diffuse natural light throughout the whole building and also provide natural ventilation.

the light and modular extension will be completely prefabricated in the workshop and installed directly onsite, reducing construction time.

over 100 years after the original buildings were constructed, this refurbishment and extension of the french embassy in vienna aims to reconnect with the fundamental DNA of art nouveau while becoming part of the contemporary architectural landscape of the austrian capital.

project info:

name: french embassy in vienna

type: relocation of services for the french embassy (RP OSCE – consulat)

location: 2 technikerstraße, vienna, austria

client: ministry for europe and foreign affairs

design team: studio malka architecture (lead architect), käferhaus engineers, sterling quest economists

area: 3,796 sqm budget: 3.1 M€