Carmencita Film Lab in Madrid is a place inspired by Richter’s camera obscura. The Valencian architecture and interior design studio Paloma Bau designed a concept space aligning with brand’s values. Τhe studio opted for an analog photography of the project, highlighting its distinctiveness.

Led by architect and interior designer Paloma Bau, the Valencian studio has materialized an innovative project inspired by Richter’s camera obscura for Carmencita Film Lab’s inaugural space in Madrid.

This 80m2 establishment serves as an ancestral device where exterior light merges with a perimeter interior skin.

Similar to a camera obscura distorting the image when projected inside, access to the venue is through a concave lens; an entrance aperture in the space, created by a large curved mirror that distorts the reflection and offers a unique visual experience. Inside, the space is adorned with a perimeter textile skin projecting some of Carmencita Film Lab’s most iconic images.

This concept coexists with the industrialization of the current developing process, reflected in the custom-designed furniture for the new establishment.

Furniture pieces draw inspiration from the assembly line process to seamlessly fit together, offering various usage options: displays, waiting areas, storage and counters. Through a small perforation in the floor, access is granted to a 30m2 basement housing a gallery of selected works, transporting visitors into a camera obscura. 

Thus, the studio has created a space that not only meets the brand’s basic needs for storage, exhibition and customer service but also generates a comprehensive and immersive experience for users.

Beyond the imposing access lens, a photobooth awaits users, inviting them to enjoy a 100% analog immersion, aligning perfectly with Carmencita Film Lab’s values.

The brand identity eschews embellishments or set decorations. In this regard, Paloma Bau’s team has pursued a sober and timeless aesthetic reflected in the choice of raw and natural materials such as iroko wood, stone, jute, cotton fabric and “negative” color. This material palette also reinterprets applications in the brand’s previous spaces.

Moreover, the furniture has been custom designed by the studio and executed by Lebrel Furniture. Pieces, made of lacquered iroko wood with microcement finish, overlap and connect to move and rotate through an axis according to the establishment’s needs.

The furniture is complemented by classic design pieces such as the TMM lamp by Miguel Milá for Santa & Cole and abundant greenery. Additionally, technical lighting has been provided by Arkoslight and suspended lamps distributed from floor to ceiling have been designed by Paloma Bau with LED tubes.

To conclude this immersive experience in the Carmencita Film Lab universe, the studio opted to conduct a photo shoot of the space in analog format, by photographer Jorge Peiró. A gesture capturing the brand’s idiosyncrasy and revealing its values.

In this way, the studio has shown its ability to transform spaces and tell stories through architecture and interior design. This project reflects the ongoing collaboration between Carmencita Film Lab and Paloma Bau with the execution of the brand’s first establishment in Valencia. Following the opening of small laboratories in Barcelona and Lisbon, the studio has opened the doors of thisspace in Madrid, presenting a unique experience in the world of photographic development.




Facts & Credits
Title Carmencita Film Lab Madrid
Typology Architecture, Interior, Design
Madrid, Spain
Store Area 80 m2
Laboratory Area
30 m2
Status Completed, 2023
Architecture, Interior & Furniture Design Paloma Bau Studio
Construction HMY
Wood Carpentry, Metal Carpentry & Furniture Manufacturing Lebrel Furniture
Technical Lighting Arkoslight
TMM Lamp Miguel Milá, Santa & Cole

Analog Photography Jorge Peiró
Art Direction Paloma Bau Estudio

Text by the authors