christophe benichou proposes sesame, a solitary monolith in the desert

christophe benichou proposes sesame, a solitary monolith in the desert

christophe benichou is a french young architect that, apart from his collaborations with different architecture studios, envisions projects centered around the senses, sometimes even upsetting them. in the past we’ve seen a prefab peanut-shaped dwelling as well as a precarious ‘tip-box’ pavilion that offers vertigo-inducing views. in his latest project called sesame, the architect returns with a solitary monolith set within the desert.

christophe benichou proposes sesame, a solitary monolith in the desert
all images by christophe benichou



sesame by christophe benichou sits in the middle of the desert sometimes as a ruin, other times as a dwelling. split open and ajar, as if following an incantatory spell, it contains in its cavities the icons of domesticity. stripped to the basics, the monolithic structure features some cuts on the slabs that seem to roll out in order to let the light in.

christophe benichou proposes sesame, a solitary monolith in the desert



‘sesame evokes the ambiguity of a fixed or imminent movement, but also of an uncertain time, between ruin and contemporaneity,’ comments benichou. ‘sesame is a sanctuary of light and shadows, without any direct view to the outside: a place for introspection in the immensity.’

christophe benichou proposes sesame, a solitary monolith in the desert



project info:


name: sesame

architect: christophe benichou architectures

  • That deserves a ‘Wow’. You will need a large shed to keep a couple of gas-powered leaf blower handy after a sandstorm. It’s wonderful.


    Jimmy Xi says:

have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

comments policy
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

architecture news

keep up with our daily and weekly stories
502,637 subscribers
- see sample
- see sample