Jean Prouve, Maisons Coques, (1950-1952)
During the assembly work for the Mame Printing Works. Prouve made an observation that he later described as follows: “One beautiful day around lunchtime, I saw thirty workers taking a break. They were sitting and eating among the stored shed-roof elements – and they all told me the same thing: “We don’’t know why, but we feel at ease here.” This was the birth of the shell houses, or maisons coques, who’s prototype Prouve presented in Paris at the 1951 exhibition Arts Menagers. Basically, this construction principle entailed no more than creating a series of “shells” made of bent shed roof elements, which rest on facades or interior walls. Not much later, numerous variations on such “shell houses” were completed.