Architectural interventions are restricted in the historic apartment. Claus takes it a step further, however, and refuses to make even minor repairs. “It would destroy the pristine character of the space, which is just as it was when Perret’s wife died in 1961,” he says. “We are just passing by.” The plumbing in the bathroom, for instance, no longer works, so his wife uses the room as an office, working between the original stone basin and bathtub. The couple brushes their teeth and bathes in the kitchen, where Claus installed a makeshift shower.
Reflected in the bathroom mirror is a photograph of a Perret-designed building in Le Havre, shot by Dutch architectural photographer Kim Zwarts. “It’s impossible not to pay homage to him within the space,” says Claus.