(b. 1875, Ath, d. 1952, Bruxelles)

Maison Cauchie: façade

Rues des Francs 5, Etterbeek, Brussels

Towards 1905 Cauchie's style became more geometrical. It was at this time that he built his own studio and house at Etterbeek, Brussels, in collaboration with the architect Edouard Frankinet (1877-1937). Designed with a rather severe rectilinear façade incorporating Art Nouveau mural panels, its originality lies in the exploitation and synthesis of two favourite themes of Paul Hankar: the tower-house and the poster-façade. As a work of painting above all, its sgraffito surfaces, which govern the lines of the composition as a whole, play an important role in conferring upon the façade an essentially pictorial character.

Cauchie House is a good example of applying the principle of "total art" in architecture. Cauchie and his wife wanted that the distinction between the main art forms (architecture, painting, sculpture) and the minor art forms (decorative arts) disappeared to become part of the global oeuvre.