Natchitoches, Louisiana


The Louisiana State Museum is located in Natchitoches, the oldest settlement in the Louisiana Purchase. Set on the banks of the Cane River Lake, the project is inspired by the riverfront setting, early sustainable practices and the 17th century bousillage building technique brought to the region by French settlers.


The Museum’s interior reflects the region’s fluvial geomorphology – the transformation of the landscape from centuries of carving by the meandering river. Sculpted from 1,250 unique cast stone panels, the interior seamlessly integrates building systems and serves as a canvas for exhibitions and films.


The simple, orthogonal container contrasts with the sinuous interior, highlighting the dialogue between the city and the natural environment. The exterior cladding of pleated copper panels employs surface articulation alluding to the louvers found in nearby plantations, used to control light, views and ventilation.





Trahan Architects, the celebrated firm led by Victor F. “Trey” Trahan, III, FAIA, has received international acclaim for work that is intensely personal, historically grounded and aesthetically sublime. As one of the nation’s premier design firms, Trahan Architects has garnered national and international awards, as well as praise by clients and stakeholders. Each project reflects a deep exploration of cultural context and technologically innovative solutions to create refined structures that are simultaneously timeless and progressive.


Headquartered in New Orleans, the firm also operates design studios in New York and Chicago. Trahan Architects has been awarded multiple National AIA Honor Awards and numerous state and regional design awards. The firm’s work is published in more than 40 countries.


Trahan Architects specializes in cultural, mixed-use, and education spaces throughout the United States and overseas. At present, the firm is engaged with multiple historic sites, including Magnolia Mound Visitor Center in Baton Rouge, The Contemporary Austin’s Laguna Gloria’s campus master plan, and the Expo Georgia Convention Center and campus master plan in Tbilisi, Georgia.


In the cultural realm, the firm was recently selected to reinvent the Memorial Arts Building in Atlanta, Georgia at the Woodruff Arts Center, creating new homes for the Atlanta Symphony and the Alliance Theater.


Large scale projects include a 42 acre Framework Plan for 505 Riverfront in Dallas, and a 4.3 million square foot mixed-use development in Zhengzhou, China, named by Forbes as one of “7 Architectural Stunners On The Horizon”. The $230 million restoration of the Mercedes Benz Superdome following Hurricane Katrina is celebrated by FEMA as its most successful restoration project, completed under budget and ahead of schedule.


All of Trahan Architects’ projects are characterized by attention to client objectives, innovation, artistry and craft, as well as enhancement of the public realm and the quality of life for the communities they grace.

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