SCAPE Architecture. A portrait by Jean-Philippe Hugron. March 2023
SCAPE Architecture was founded in Rome in 2004. In 2008, the practice was awarded with the Nouveaux Albums des Jeunes Architectes, the most prestigious institutional prize for young architects in France. This first achievement leads to the opening of the office headquarters in Paris, and, in the following years, of a branch in Milan.
As a result of its open vision, SCAPE Architecture work covers a wide span of programmes. Among them: the Railway Operation Centre in Pantin (2021), a complex technical building controlling 20% of national and regional train traffic; the extension of the MAXXI Museum in Rome, to be completed in 2026, adding to Zaha Hadid’s masterpiece a multifunctional building dedicated to laboratories, a learning centre and storage areas; the logistics hub built in 2022 for the Établissements Vilatte, a private company, in Massy.
Through those projects, SCAPE Architecture recent research focuses on the role and place of productive buildings in the heart of the contemporary city’s fabric. This investigation is aimed to redefine those which usually are seen as backstage buildings, through a new way of living in and using them.
Furthermore, SCAPE portfolio encompasses a long list of projects, expressing the desire and the experience of a broader research: a housing project in Milan, a timber office building in Paris-Batignolles, the Italian National Judaïsm Museum in Ferrara…
For Ludovica Di Falco, SCAPE founding partner, each project is an opportunity to reinforce the commitment of the office. Born in Naples in 1975, educated in the Lycée Français de Rome, she studied architecture in Rome and TU Wien. She sees herself as an entrepreneur architect: a definition consistent with her multiple and somehow contradictory interests.
Brought up by an Italian and Swiss family, Ludovica’s cultural background is profoundly European and deeply Mediterranean. Her practice is focused in finding the balance between the overwhelming idea of architecture as a solution to political, social, and cultural problems, and the superficial attitude of bringing simplicistic solutions to complex matters. The act of reading, in all its multiple forms, is for Ludovica a discipline leading to concentration, the key to focus and escape the lack of attention that dramatically affects us as individuals and as a society.
Being an architect means being flexible, which is an antidote to avoid mechanical thinking and acting. Mathilde Mouchel contributes to this philosophy, in her capacity of Project Director at SCAPE since 2016. Mathilde graduated from Paris-Belleville School of Architecture and is passionate in every matter mixing architecture and urbanism; she nourishesSCAPE practice with her work on historical architecture and building transformation, previously developed during her 15 years at the Atelier d’Architecture Philippe Prost, Grand Prix National d’Architecture in 2022.
Ludovica and Mathilde backgrounds join in their common vision of architecture as a global
comprehension of the building process. SCAPE follows every project from the very first conception phases until completion and considers itself the trait d’union between the multiple stakeholders at every stage. Architecture is not limited to its creative part: it’s a responsibility, where the first drawings lead to complex construction sites. A project is therefore conceived with having in mind what follows next and with the awareness of the long-term impact of the building practice.