Sainte-Maxime - Le clos de la Madrague
- department: Var
- town: Sainte-Maxime
- naming: Le clos de la Madrague
- address: chemin de la Vierge Noire
- author: René DARDE (architect)
- date: c. 1924
- protection: unprotected building
- label patrimoine XXe: Commission régionale du patrimoine et des sites du 15 March 2007
After training at the École des Beaux-Arts, René Darde joined the Parisian architecture agency Sauvage and Sarazin in 1912. Sent by them to Grimaud (Var) to follow the construction site of the Beauvallon golf-hotel, he settled in the Midi. Having become the son-in-law of a large landowner of Sainte-Maxime, with the development in the 1920s of this seaside resort, he was given a large number of commissions: seaside architecture, commercial, leisure, many villas, in Sainte-Maxime, Saint-Raphael and its surroundings. In 1926, with Prost, he was responsible for the development, expansion and embellishment of Sainte-Maxime, of which he later became an architect-urbanist. After World War II, he was appointed expert for the Ministry of Reconstruction and Urban Planning. Victim of a sudden hemiplegia in 1950, he reduced his activity to designing villas. He is one of the major representatives of neo-regionalism in the Var.
The villa is located in a large sloping park overlooking the sea, developed in the 1980s. The villa, included in the current condominium, remained outwardly in its original condition and perfectly maintained.
The whole, cubic volume of a floor on ground floor, was organized to enjoy the view and protect from the sun: on the front, bedrooms and reception spaces, amenities and domesticity in the back. A wing adjoined in bias welcomed galley and kitchen. The façade on the sea, placed behind two superimposed loggias, is characterized by its appearance both open and hollowed out, on the ground floor by three arcades, on the first floor by a large loggia rhythmic columns.
The three rows of Genoese of the tile roof, the flaring at the base of the walls, the interweaving, at the rear, of small volumes and irregular holes on the bodies of buildings, contribute to the regionalist aspect of the whole, enhanced by the ochre colouring of the walls and green of the wooden shutters.
The terraced garden, planted with Mediterranean species, has kept its walls and paths in local schist. The terrace at the level of the house is converted into a regular garden, with a small pool.
This villa was built for Victor Margueritte, novelist and playwright. Preoccupied with social issues and an advocate for the emancipation of women, he remained mainly in his memoirs for his novel La Garçonne, published in 1922 and considered shocking at the time.
- Editor: Sylvie Denante, drac paca crmh, 2009