L'île flottante, lycée François Rabelais, Ifs

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L'île flottante, lycée François Rabelais, Ifs


The Île Flottante is an enlightening area for get-togethers and culinary mediations 

At the lycée des Métiers de l’hôtellerie restauration et de la boulangerie François Rabelais at Ifs in Lower Normandy, the designer matali crasset cooked-up and designed this Ile Flottante, an exclusive area where people meet and debate around culinary activities, discussing potential and undeveloped ideas. Within this brightly-lit space of 140 m2, mostly opening onto two outdoor patios, both the students and teachers are encouraged to step outside the purely professional setting to make, invent and share ideas, to change the scenery...

As matali crasset points out: “I designed this île flottant using notions of converging, malleability, mobility and creativity”. The yellow background symbolizes energy, passion and drive, and the white units represent partitions and seating areas which can be moved around to create and change the space. Each person can adapt it to their personality and arrange it to their individual needs. Here everything can be shifted around, re-positioned, endlessly forging different layouts, different spaces corresponding to the equally numerous ways of working, learning and exchanging.

The moveable partitions can create the space like kitchens and back kitchens depending on the activities. For food sampling, a counter is installed in the middle of an informal seating arrangement, for a small meeting the tables can easily be joined together, for showing a film or a cooking demo, the seating can be lined up facing a screen or an elevated stage area and even for an exhibition the walls can be pushed aside to create a large open space. The specifically-designed white and yellow furniture for the Île Flottante is easy to change around, allowing for flexibility and versatility.

Workshops, food-sampling, presentations, exhibitions... this purposely modern space proposes an alternative to the classically-planned working methods, meetings and presentations... it incites both students and teachers to “act”, inventing  innovative actions and variously sharing knowledge and know-how.

This project is entitled Île Flottante in referenceto the internationally-loved dessert, which gives it this specific shape, colour and simultaneously its identity which furthermore boasts a logo and outdoor lit signs.

Last but not least, to fully identify the Île Flottante as a space for getting together and working but also for creative actions, this space proposes a series of books and films dedicated to the culinary arts, intended for student development and enhancement of this culture reflecting their fields  of study and learning. 



  • Philippe Piron