The building is located in the upper part of the town. It backs onto the woods, forming the final outer limit of the built-up area. Echoing the open landscape, it faces the Belfort Lion on the hilltopopposite. Within this powerful context, the building presents its solidity, an almost opaque mass of grey concrete. The surface of the mass has an unusual texture, evoking plants or the veins in marble, achieved by drip painting in two shades of blue. The drips of paint lend depth and substance to the skin of the building. The surfaces vibrate in the light and appear to be in motion – matter ceases to be static.
The concrete monolith exudes an enigmatic presence. Only the volume of the dance room seems to be looking at the Lion, constructed in 1879 as a symbol of resistance to the enemy. The building brings together a variety of volumes with different usages. It contains two auditoriums, a theatre, a large dance room, a library, classrooms, administrative offices, and a host of studios with a wide range of volumes and areas. The acoustics of each studio are designed to suit one specific instrument. The areas appear to fit into each other. Empty areas are hollowed out of this compact mass, creating relationships between the different levels. The entrance hall is on an unexpected scale. The library seems to be suspended. The central patio is the darkest area. Its colour and its negative design reverse the codes of the outer shell. It is the ultimate expression of density.