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In solidarity with the Ukrainian people, the Cité internationale universitaire de Paris wishes to welcome and support up to 500 students, researchers and academics affected by the war in Ukraine from the start of the 2022 academic year. The Cité internationale does not have a House of Ukraine but, to offer them the best possible reception conditions, it has asked the architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte to design a virtual House of Ukraine. This project, highly symbolic and virtual, suggests a place close to reality.

A light-hearted project with a positive outlook for the future

The virtual House of Ukraine is a concrete response to build the future. This symbolic project was designed to preserve the future of students, researchers and academics affected by the war in Ukraine in a medium-term perspective beyond a response to immediate needs. It will offer them the best possible conditions for resuming or continuing their studies in French higher education. It will allow them to prepare their personal and professional future with serenity in a place that welcomes the youth of the world and to guarantee the protection of their academic future.

It has three objectives: to offer students, researchers and academics accommodation within the 43 Houses on the campus, to accompany them throughout their stay and to safeguard their future in order to rebuild the Ukrainian university.

Jean-Michel Wilmotte's talent at the service of a collective work

The architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte agreed to participate in this exceptional project and to join the Cité internationale in betting on youth. Wilmotte & Associés has designed a pavilion, an allusive reminder of constructivist architecture, whose volumes and use of materials recall the Ukrainian flag. This digital work is also a way of highlighting art and culture as a response to the noise and destruction of war. Three works have been designed: the façade of the house, a room and a collective space with a piano.

The virtual House of Ukraine

Illustration de la Maison virtuelle de l’Ukraine

The House of Ukraine is a positive perspective on the future, a highly symbolic virtual project that may be close to reality. The upper, levitating part contains the housing. The two-storey lower part is the educational base, which includes a library, workrooms, an auditorium and a music room. A world has been recreated for students to meet, live and work. Reminiscent of constructivist architecture, the pavilion was designed with volumes and materials that recall the Ukrainian flag. The patio is a reminder of the Cité internationale's openness to the world. The path leading to the house evokes a future perspective.

View of an accommodation

Illustration de la Maison virtuelle de l’Ukraine

The House of Ukraine provides a real place to live and work for students, researchers and academics like the existing pavilions. The accommodation is spacious to accommodate families. The delicate touches of yellow and blue evoke Ukraine in the background. This bright accommodation that evokes hope has been designed in continuity with the values of multiculturalism and openness to the world of the Cité internationale.

View of a common area with piano

Illustration de la Maison virtuelle de l’Ukraine

Like all the houses of the Cité internationale, the House of Ukraine offers a common space with a piano to experience living together, studying, creating or dialoguing.

Jean-Michel Wilmotte

A member of the Académie des Beaux-Arts since 2015 and administrator of the Decorative Arts since 2008, Jean-Michel Wilmotte is an architect, urban planner and designer. In 1975, he founded Wilmotte & Associés, a multinational agency with more than 260 employees of 25 nationalities working on over 100 projects in 30 countries. Both committed to the preservation of architectural heritage and resolutely forward-looking, Jean-Michel Wilmotte shares an approach and savoir-faire with future architects through the Wilmotte Foundation created in 2005. The W Prize is an international competition, which awards the concept of a contemporary grafting around an old building. Wilmotte & Associés has won numerous international awards and has been ranked among the world's top 100 architecture firms since 2010, and will be 56th in 2021, according to a study by the British magazine Building Design.

I couldn't help but accept this project, which appeared to me as an obvious choice. The House of Ukraine is a virtual project, highly symbolic, which evokes the drama of a country I am particularly fond of. I wanted to suggest a place where students could live and work. The House of Ukraine is a positive perspective on the future.
Jean-Michel Wilmotte, architect, President of Wilmotte & Associés
Wilmotte & Associés architectes