On July 4th 2013, ICOMOS France launched an alert regarding the impending destruction of the Novartis-Sandoz headquarters in Rueil-Malmaison, Paris.
Built in 1968, the complex is barely 45 years old, and displays a stylish modernity remarkably designed and implemented by the architects Martin Burckhardt & Bernard Zehrfuss, assisted by the ingenious constructive thinking of Jean Prouvé (1901-‐1984). Conceived in order to respect the harmony of the wooden landscape and the pond, the extreme unweighting of the structure and the façade panels is a witness of the latest –and patented-‐ improvements by Jean Prouvé in the implementation of curtain walls in aluminum and glass products. Two 4-‐storey Parallelepipeds offices and laboratories and a polygonal restaurant (interiors by Charlotte Perriand) ere gently inserted into the remains of the old castle of Richelieu (17th century), rebuilt in the 19th century, in a landscape lightly remodeled by Vilmorin Including a large pond involved in the supply of the river Seine.
The alert, supported by Docomomo International. Docomomo France, la Societe pour la Protection des Paysages et de l´Esthetique de la France, Vieilles Maisons Francaises, and Paris Historique, aims at safeguarding the site from demolition, appealing to the building owners as well as local and national authorities.