Atelier - Atelier Baraness + Cawker
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Located on the edge of the flower market in downtown Nice, the Atelier Baraness + Cawker has been designing villas and gardens for international clients in the south of France, for over twenty years.

By pushing the boundaries around architecture, interior design and landscape, the Atelier creates tailor made spaces that tend to erase the limits between indoor and outdoor, inviting people to experience the unrivalled climate and conviviality of Mediterranean life.

A multidisciplinary team working directly with Marc Baraness (architect DPLG RIBA) and Ruth Cawker (architect OAA), manages all aspects from outdoor to indoor. The multi-faceted team approach allows us to provide personal contact from the earliest stages to the delivery of each architecture project.


Architect DPLG RIBA

Trained as an architect in Paris and Toronto, Marc Baraness practised for twenty years in Canada before returning to open an architecture practice in France.

He was Director of the Architecture and Urban Design Division for the City of Toronto from 1988 to 1995, acting as prime consultant to the Planning Commissioner on questions related to architecture, urban design, and public art.


In 1993, his team won the competition to redesign the Promenade des Anglais in Nice, and although the project was not realized, he moved to France and carried out graduate research (DEA and doctoral research) at the Ecole d’Architecture Paris Belleville before opening the Atelier Baraness + Cawker in 1997.


In 2006, Marc Baraness obtained qualification in sustainable design, Haute Qualité Environnementale (HQE), bringing energy conservation to the forefront in the design work of the Atelier.


Architect OAA

Ruth Cawker opened her architecture practice in Toronto in 1986. She holds degrees from three universities, including a degree in French and English literature and professional degrees in architecture.


Her Toronto practice won the competition for the headquarters of the Ontario Association of Architects. Following completion of the OAA building in 1992, Cawker was appointed Chief Architect of CIBC Development Corporation, overseeing design guidelines for bank architecture and office space. The design for CIBC’s banking machine surround was carried out under her direction, along with the vis-à-vis furniture system, installed in banks across Canada.


In 1995, Cawker moved to France with Marc Baraness, where she complete graduate research (DEA) on the Mediterranean garden. Her research included a thesis comparing the work of garden designer Octave Godard with that of urban designer Robert da Souza, as well as an analysis of Nice’s expressway, which was published in 2000 in the collection Mobilité & esthétique. Cawker was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Glendon College, York University in 1996.


The partnership Atelier Baraness + Cawker was created in Nice in 1997. Cawker’s role in the Atelier is both as a member of the design team and as a resource in specification and quality control throughout the practice. Her ongoing research includes garden design, interior and exterior lighting, furniture and materials.