MH&JV Associates is a Bordeaux-based practice with an office in Paris.
Marjan Hessamfar and Joe Vérons graduated from the school of architecture landscape design in Bordeaux and established their firm in 2004. They won the competition for residential architecture “L’Envers des Villes” in 2003 and the competition “Célébration des villes” organised by the UIA (Union Internationale des Architectes). Their rehabilitation project for the River Darban in Teheran, Iran addressed themes central to urban ecology such as geography, water pollution, and the history of techniques. They won the Première oeuvre (first building) award in 2008 for the Jean-Jaurès primary school in Cenon, Gironde, and quickly stood out for their exacting, elegant work inspired by their dual European and Persian heritage. Without ever limiting itself to a single aesthetic, their architecture stands out for the simplicity of the materials used, often left raw, and the presence of abundant natural light, which is a constant preoccupation. Behind their understated, simple style and almost self-effacing approach lies a great deal of extremely painstaking work. The unbroken façades, tense lines, and rectilinear forms often feature a harmonious and minimalistic combination of concrete and wood. The windows and exits are often concealed by dual-skin systems such as slatted screens, making them almost invisible and resulting in very simple-looking buildings with uncluttered, pure forms devoid of visual effects. Since the firm was established in 2004, Marjan Hessamfar and Joe Vérons have developed their expertise on a wide variety of programmes: housing, schools, tertiary developments, cultural and sports facilities, mixeduse programmes, etc. Transcending the ordinary, transforming the everyday, and revealing the potential of what already exists, Marjan Hessamfar and Joe Vérons focus strongly on the contextual setting of each project and strive to create a kind of architecture that is desirable for its future inhabitants.