Project: French Polynesia Cultural Center in Papeete
Program: Cultural Center, multimedia library, auditorium, exhibition spaces
Architects: Parc architectes (Representative) — a.maramarama
Consultants: Polynesia engineering – Frederic CASANOVA – PEUTZ & Associes – Neonenergie – BMF
Client: Ministry of Cultural Affairs, of the Environnement and of Arts & Crafts, in charge of the Promotion of languages and Communication of the French Polynesia
Status: Preliminary design



In the Tropic of Capricorn, the Polynesian cultural center in Papeete sits between the horizontality of the ocean and the verticality of the mountains. This elementary project links the sun, the rain and the earth. It creates a shade area in a garden as an extension of the coastal park. It is a coconut grove made of long grooves which forms a large shade shelter which filters out the frank light of the sun. Open to the sky, the grooves collect the rain that flows through poles of the structure.


This device, combining a pole and a groove, works like a plant that opens up to the sun and collects the water that flows in its stem. The whole is a canopy of metal, wood and glass. The multiplicity of poles forms a dotted plan. Like the traditional habitat, called faré, the spaces are delimited by alignments of trunks forming a primary structure on which is woven a covering of leaves.


These spaces can be indoor or outdoor, in the shade or in the light. They thus constitute a variety of climatic modulations favorable to the different cultural activities of the site.

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