Bernard Cache fonds
The Bernard Cache fonds, 1992-2011, document Bernard Cache’s work as a principal of Objectile, his collaboration with Missler software for the development of TopSolid and also his academic work. The majority of the records date from 2004 to 2008.
This archive includes solely born-digital material and consists of approximately 28,705 digital files (15 GB). The records, which are arranged into three series, chiefly document the period during which Objectile was active. The records are mostly composed of images, textual records, and TopSolid drawings and models.
Across the collection there are a number of unidentified file types. These represents in most part design files created in TopSolid, as well as installation files for several versions of the TopSolid software. The TopSolid software will not launch successfully without a current TopSolid license, which was not available at the time of processing. The TopSolid files can be opened using this software. For further information about services and software available for interacting with obsolete or niche file formats, please contact Collection Reference (email@example.com) and ask to speak with the Digital Archivist.
This fonds is arranged into three series based on Cache’s professional activities:
Series 1. Objectile records (2 GB)
Series 2. TopSolid development (12 GB)
Series 3. Academic works (1 GB)
Within each series, folders are grouped by activities or subject (i.e. website, legal, administration). There is likely some overlap between series, as these activities were closely related and often were worked on during the same period of time.
Objectile is an architecture firm founded by Bernard Cache, Patrick Beaucé, and Jean-Louis Jammot in Paris in 1996.
Founding partner and senior consultant, Bernard Cache graduated in architecture from École Polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) (1983), received an MBA at École Supérieure des Sciences Économiques (ESSEC) (1985), and a diploma at the Institut Polytechnique de Philosophie under the direction of Gilles Deleuze (1986). Patrick Beaucé, founding partner and designer, received a diploma in fine arts from School of Fine Arts of Nîmes (1985). Jean-Louis Jammot, was also a founding partner, while, at the time, being Head of development at Missler software. He graduated as an Engineer from l'École Centrale de Paris.
The firm was conceived as a vertically integrated design, fabrication, and distribution office with global ambitions for design and construction, while also being a research laboratory in the field of digital design and architecture, creating non-standard objects using the most advanced available technologies. As early adopters of computational architecture, Objectile mixed engineering, mathematics, technology, and philosophy to develop and industrially produce curved and variable forms for every scale: sculpture, design, furnishings, architecture, urban planning and landscape architecture. The firm was mostly recognized for their decorative wood wall panels, their screen walls, and decorated trays built from complex geometric forms leading to unlimited design variations. Objectile’s objects are produced through a digital production workshop, enabling creators to control the entire chain of production from beginning to end, from computer-assisted design to manufacturing.
Cache's collaboration with Missler Software for the design and development of the computer-aided design software TopSolid™ was fundamental to Objectile's work. Objectile also established partnerships with manufacturers and distributors in France, Holland, the UK, Southeast Asia, New Zealand and the United States. Cache theorized that custom-designed and fabricated building components would be the future of architectural production. With a software platform for the design of endless variations of families of elements and a network of machines around the world, the architect could send a file to Singapore, New York, or New Zealand and have it made in the same way a document is sent to the printer.
Objectile had also one of the first websites dedicated to an architectural firm, through which, early Internet users could browse and order decorative panels from one of six families of patterns and could even manipulate an online applet to determine their own unique patterns.
Firm principal Bernard Cache is additionally known for his theoretical writings on geometry and computational ontology. His book, Earth Moves (first written in 1983, published in1995) introduced the concept of “non-standard architecture,” a concept later termed as “objectile” by Gilles Deleuze in The Fold (1988). The term “objectile” represents a new definition of the object, no longer thought of as having an essential or definitive form, but rather one that is a mathematical function that takes its place within a “continuum through variation.”
Finally, Bernard Cache, is the founder and former director of the Digital Production Laboratory of the School of Architecture of the Polytechnic University of Catalonia and current associate professor at EPFL. He lectures around the globe. Patrick Beaucé, works in the field of design and interior architecture, whose projects include the headquarters of Air France, and creation of many stage and film sets. He is currently a professor at École nationale supérieur d’Art et de Design de Nancy.
The Objectile studio and the Objectile digital production workshop designed architecture projects like Pallas House in Kuala Lumpur with dECOi (1997) and Pavillon de L’Orme (2001; developed industrial designs for La Société nationale des Chemins de fers français (SNCF); and published writings on architectural theory. Their work has notably been shown at ArchiLab (Orleans, 1999), at the Festival of Architecture (Florence, 2002), and at the Centre Pompidou in Paris (Architectures non standard, 2003).
The firm has been inactive as of 2010.
Prior to transfer transfer to CCA, all materials in the fonds were in the personal possession of Bernard Cache in Paris, France. The fonds arrived at CCA in two accessions. The first accession consisted of the hard drive, which was sent to CCA within its original PC, removed and placed into a protective case by CCA IT staff. It appears that some system files may have been altered by CCA staff during the process of acquiring and analyzing the hard drive in 2013. The PC, a standard consumer-grade Dell, was not kept. In 2015, Digital Archivist Tim Walsh created a forensic disk image of the hard drive, which was subsequently ingested into CCA's digital repository. The second accession consisted of the .rar file, which was sent by Bernard Cache via network transfer to Martien de Vletter, Associate Director, Collection, and subsequently ingested into the digital repository. These records were acquired by CCA as part of the Archaeology of the Digital project. Selected items and reproduction wall panels were displayed in the show Archaeology of the Digital: Media and Machines, May-October 2014.
When citing the collection as a whole, use the citation:
Bernard Cache, Objectile records,
Collection Centre Canadien d'Architecture/
Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montréal
When citing specific collection material, please refer to the object’s specific credit line.
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