Charles-Ferdinand Ramuz was known as one the greatest Swiss writers from the 20th century, and as such most of his works were inspired by the paradisiacal elements of the Alps. To that end, one of his novels from 1934 named ‘Derborence‘ pertains to the breathtaking pastures of the Valley of Lizerne – in which the hero Antoine takes shelter under the rocks for seven weeks, before safely reaching his village. The architects from studio Bureau A were inspired by this fictional feat, to design the namesake ‘Antoine’, a snugly-built wooden cabin contained within a boulder-mimicking concrete shell.
However, beyond literary inspiration, the practical structure of the cabin was influenced by the traditional Swiss architecture of hidden bunkers and camouflaged buildings, made famous by the writings of French philosopher Paul Virilio. In that regard, the Antoine dwelling was actually built off-site and then concealed within a rockfall field, thus blending inconspicuously with the rocky Alp environment.
As of the interiors of the cabin, the habitat flaunts an unsurprisingly austere decor with minimalist wooden panels defining the walls. This enclosed space (connected to outside via a small window) comprises of a dedicated fireplace, bed, fold-out table and a seat.
So, at the end of the day, the architectural work is all about mirroring the natural eco-system within which it is built. In fact, the Antoine does that with aplomb, with the hidden dwelling demonstrating its nestled ‘alpine’ characteristics through an effective rock-replicating form.