November 20, 2018
by Canadian Architect
When the noted firm of Rubin & Rotman Architects moves into its new premises at Parisian Laundry in the coming weeks, not only will it have a new address, but it will also welcome three new partners and have a new name — Figurr Architects Collective.
“We are entering a new era, which has led us to look to the future and to the sustainability of our firm,” explains Rick Rubin, who co-founded the firm with architect Stephen Rotman. “The firm’s evolution is not driven by its founders alone but by its multidisciplinary approach, influenced by the ideas, skills, and cultures of each and every member of the team. The designation of “collective” perfectly illustrates our principal creative process and our values. We have achieved a subtle balance of Franco- and Anglo-Québécois experience, paired with the contributions of a wide range of cultures from abroad.”
That sort of collaboration is at the core of what the firm does, explains Rubin. When people create together, it inspires them to do their best work.
The name Figurr is an amalgam of the term “figure,” a word that expresses an important aspect of the architecture profession—the renderings that allow architects to present their plans—combined with the founders’ initials.
For the firm’s new offices, the choice of Parisian Laundry, located in Montreal’s Saint-Henri neighbourhood, is not an insignificant one. This historic building with an industrial past is already home to a contemporary art gallery and clearly embodies the values the collective has adopted.
“We have designed it with respect for its singularity,” explains Partner Bruno Morin. “All of our projects take root in spaces, in history, in communities. Our experience with First Nations has always helped guide us along this path. What we do for our clients, we are doing for ourselves!”
When drawing up their own new offices in Montreal, Figurr Architects Collective had a long list of their own award-winning projects to inspire them; everything from the spectacular Aanischaaukamikw Cree Cultural Institute in Oujé-Bougoumou, Quebec to the corporate head offices of Broccolini and GlobalVision.
Lastly, the appointment of three new partners this past spring has brought a new vitality to the team. They are Roberto Campos, heading the Ottawa office, and Bruno Morin and Pascale Tétrault, both working in the Montreal office.
Rubin & Rotman Architects was founded in 1989 by Rick Rubin and Stephen Rotman. The two architects manage the firm, along with partners Roberto Campos, Bruno Morin, and Pascale Tétrault. The team, based in offices located in Montreal and in Ottawa, is made up of some forty architects, designers, and technologists, as well as administrative personnel. It works with a local, national, and international clientele in a wide variety of sectors including corporate, residential, institutional, aviation and First Nations.