Tolila+Gilliland designs its brand new Paris studio in an old attic workshop



Architects Benoît-Marie Moriceau and Gaston Tolila revised a former workshop in the Butt aux Cailles district of Paris to create an office and studio for their growing team.





Tolila + Gilliland surpassed its previous office space, so the 12-person team moved into the attic space, which had formerly been used as a workshop for several different companies.


To begin, architects took off layers of ceilings and office partitions to reveal the "industrial bones" in the space of 160 square meters. They discovered the wooden supports of a flat roof 4.5 meters high.


This wooden structure has been painted white and filled with insulated wood fiber panels, guaranteeing the acoustic and thermal insulation of the space. These are interrupted by a grid of dormers, which floods the open space with the light.

An additional light enters through the windows at both ends of the building.


"When we arrived, the ceiling was low, with dark desks - we opened everything to create a new configuration allowing small workgroups in a wider open space," said architect Nicholas Gilliland.


The galvanized steel cable supports maintain the building's industrial aesthetics, as well as the laminated gray concrete floor. The heavy modular galvanized steel shelving systems divide the spaces, providing both storage and magnetic display surfaces.


For the interior, the framing block tables provide space for the studio's architectural models. There is also a "hardware wall" at one end of the workshop presenting samples for the research of ongoing projects, as well as furniture from USM and Herman Miller.


"The privacy protection is reinforced by side shelves one meter high at each desk," said Gilliland. "The acoustic treatment of the ceiling reduces noise pollution in open spaces.

"The teams use the two small and large conference rooms for extra rest rooms or group meetings."


Tolila and Gilliland launched their studio in 2003, working on both architectural and urban planning projects covering the private and public sectors.

Past projects include a stainless steel hangar that provides studio space and accommodation for artists near Nantes, France, and the conversion of a jewelry store into an Aesop felts shop in London.

The photograph is by Camille Gharbi.