French Heritage Society, in partnership with the American Architectural Foundation, participates in awarding the Richard Morris Hunt Fellowship each year, alternately, to a French or to an American architect pursuing a career in historic preservation.
Named for the first American architect to study at Paris’ Ecole des Beaux Arts, the program, founded in 1990, is led by Michèle le Menestrel Ullrich, RMHF co-founder and Ronald Bogle, AAF President and CEO.
The fellowship allows experienced preservation architects from both countries to travel for six months, divided into two periods, to France or the United States to research and observe their counterparts’ theories, methodologies, rules and practices.
Each Fellow focuses on a topic of their choice such as the “duality of a modern structure in an historic environment”, “restoration of 20th-century buildings using 21st-century tools”, or the pressing question of “how to combine sustainable development and preservation”.
After studying at the School of Architecture in Marseille and Paris-Belleville, Laurent joined the team of Jean Nouvel, Jean Paul Viguier and Paul Andreu. Laurent is a lecturer at the Ecole Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture in Montpellier where he created the field of study at the Masters level "Metropolis of the South" in 2009 and was responsible for the Architecture and Heritage Department.
From 1999 to 2001, he was "studio critic" for Columbia University New York/Paris program. From 1996 to 2001, he was responsible for the public opening of the Jaoul Houses built in Neuilly-sur-Seine by Le Corbusier about which he gave several lectures. He initiated the celebration "20 Years of Nemausus" and the label "Heritage of the 20th Century," for use in the Languedoc-Roussillon region. In 2010, he participated in the seminar "Conservation, Restoration of the Architecture of the Modern Movement" in Toulouse. In 2004, he participated in the European Research Seminar on "TEAM X, Buildings and Theories" in Toulouse and in 2003 the seminar "Around the CIAM IX" in Aix-en-Provence with an article on Georges Candilis.
Laurent is currently in charge of creating the RBC Design Center in Montpellier in collaboration with Jean Nouvel. Since 1995, in collaboration with Nicolas Crégut of C+D Architecture, he has participated in many competitions:
This year, for the second year, the RMHF Jury also named a Richard Morris Hunt Scholar, Axelle Macardier. The RMHF Jury especially appreciated Axelle's unique and forwarding looking approach to the architectural and urban environment, her thirst for knowledge coupled with her ability to understand the issues facing our world today. Axelle's research topic will focus on a very precise urban renewal issue, "The Fate of the 19th-century Centers Surrounding Train Stations." The 2014 RMHF Scholar will receive a prize of $5,000 in order to undertake five weeks of research, in the United States, in Axelle's case.
A graduate in architecture from the Ecole de Chaillot in 2013, Axelle holds a DSA for Architecture and Heritage. As an employee in Paris at a firm of two heritage architects, she has conducted several restoration and rehabilitation projects of various scales. She has also written several papers on the role of the preservation architects at all stages of a project and written essays on doctrines in general. She is currently an assistant to the Architecte des Bâtiments de France at the Service Départemental de l'Architecture et du Patrimoine in the Seine-Saint Denis area.
To date, 24 American and French Fellows have taken part in this unique program:
Since 2009, French Heritage Society is pleased to have Lafarge, a world leader in construction materials, generously sponsor this prestigious program, in keeping with its practice of active partnership with architects, and brings its financial, technical and scientific support to the RMHF.