MUGU house by Stéphane Malka


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  • Status: In progress
  • Year: 2017
  • Team: Tristan Spella Co-Conceptor, Stéphane Malka Architecture Los Angeles


Inhabit the Hills

Located at Mugu Point California, fifty miles away from Los Angeles where Malka Architecture just opened its new studio, the Mugu House is nested on Malibu’s Hills porosities.
The project benefits from the existing topography of the actual site ; the result is a zero impact on the surrounding nature, an ecological project in immersion with the rock, its vegetation and its thermal variations.

The Mugu House embodies a return to the roots of architecture in connection with the natural elements, a dialogue with the mountain and its troglodyte architecture.

This lightweight architecture is constituted of prefabricated alveolar concrete made from primary materials available locally such as sand and aggregates, with a very low cement content (7%), which reduces 28 times the CO2 emissions and the ecological footprint in comparison with the traditional concrete.
Easy to build and to remove, this site allows a quick, inexpensive, clean, sustainable and waste-free installation, with manual installation.
Built with very few partitions, the rock determines the geometry of the interior spaces.
The flank of the uninterrupted mountain extends inside each room, reminding us that we are the guests of nature.
Thus the habitation is in constant connection with the organic nature and its surrounding context through the hill, its lichens, succulents and other vegetables.

Thanks to its large bay windows, the main façade bathes the inhabitant in the ocean, offering a long stretched framing on the Californian panorama, creating an inner echo of  horizontal landscape .
The “double skin” consists of a system of wooden sunscreens; this Amerindian tribal pattern is composed of removable triangular units, generating different types of solar occultations.

The architecture of the Mugu House links both nature and history, sustainability and territory: the house revisits the original shelter’s myth with a vernacular dialogue with the mountain, and embodies a return to the roots of the American Continent.

Stéphane Malka

Stéphane Malka

santamonica-portrait-271x300Born in Marseilles, Stephane Malka was inspired by urban spaces from a young age. Graffiti, a technique he adopted for over 10 years, lead him to discover the city and its untapped potential. In the late 80’s, vacant lots were his playgrounds. He painted large-scale frescos in the contemporary ruins of Belleville and in the infamous artist squats of the “Ateliers Frigorifiques,” using various street skills and procesess including graffiti, accumulation, collage, and stencils the skin of walls. Returning to his hometown, he continued to invade the city with his art in numerous places, including art galleries. From this period, he kept a civil insurrection’s spirit, and a significant interest in neglected spaces, and a sense of urgency. Stephane gratuated of his architectural degree  in 2003 and founded his firm on the spot. Then, he started to collaborate with prestigious international firms such as Ateliers Jean Nouvel, Philippe Starck or Rem Koolhaas among others. The same year, he completed  Top-Nest, a panoramic rooftop bar on the Galerie Lafayette installed and built on-site in only three days. This experiences were a cornerstone for “Le Petit Pari(s)” experimental project, where he has developed theories of urban renewal based on architectural interventions within the city’s porosities, such as urban voids, blind walls, under bridges, or on rooftops. At the same time, he recycled a gas station into the art shop Black Block at the Palais de Tokyo Museum. In March 2014, he released his first book, a manifesto called “Le Petit Pari(s), an Architectural Kamasutra” ( Editions Courtes et Longues, Gallimard ). Multi-awarded by the French Ministry of Culture and the City Hall of Paris, his works are exhibited around the world in Galeries, National Museums such as La Cité de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine (Paris), MoMA (New-York City), Smolny Sobor (St-Petersburg), Museum Victoria (Melbourne) or MUBE and MIS (Sao Paulo). Stephane Malka’s analysis and productions are focused on architectural productions, art installations, stage-design and lecture cycles.



12, rue de la Fontaine au Roi
75011 Paris


7, Impasse de Montlouis
75011 Paris


2200 Walnut Avenue, Manhattan Beach
90266 Californie


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