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Le Corbusier

Le Corbusier is the nom-de-plume of Charles-Edouard Jeanneret-Gris (born in La Chaux-de-Fonds/Switzerland; died 27 August 1965 in Roquebrune-Cap-Martin/France). After studying painting and architecture at the local École d'Art, he initially worked for Josef Hofmann in Vienna, where he also made the acquaintance of Adolf Loos. Another important influence came when he was working in Paris in 1909 for over a year in the practice of Auguste Perret, a pioneering exponent of building with reinforced concrete using steel. During this period, he also visited the architect and urban planner Tony Garnier in Lyon. It was not long before Le Corbusier was focusing on modern reinforced concrete architecture. In 1917, he moved to Paris. Since he only had a few architectural commissions at the time, he spent much of his time painting, producing mainly still life's. In 1919, Le Corbusier joined the painter Amédée Ozenfant and the poet Paul Dermée to found the journal "L'Esprit Nouveau", in which he first began using his pseudonym in 1920. In 1922, Le Corbusier produced an urban planning concept for a Ville Contemporaine - a "contemporary city with a population of three million". In 1925, he collaborated with his cousin Pierre Jeanneret on designing a two-storied pavilion for the Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs in Paris. The avant-garde architecture of that pavilion was complemented by furnishings of functional design and paintings by Le Corbusier, Ozenfant, Fernand Léger, Jacques Lipchitz and others. By 1927, Le Corbusier was among the leading practitioners of the New Architecture designing the housing for the Weißenhof Settlement in Stuttgart. Around 1942, he formulated his "Modular" theory, which was Le Corbusier's term for a system of proportion based on the Golden Mean that he used in his architectural designs, especially in his large-scale urban planning projects. Intended to facilitate architecture on a human scale based on an objective system, the Modular still remains one of the most controversial of Le Corbusier's theoretical approaches to architecture. A copy of Le Corbusier's famous Modular measuring tape has been re-issued by Vitra.

Le Corbusier

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More about 'Le Corbusier' in our blog

The Modulor — Measure and Proportion at Pavillon Le Corbusier, Zürich

..."Customs turn into habits, some modest, some all-powerful", opined Le Corbusier in 1950, a reference to that inexplicable way humans have of passing through life blithely accepting all that has come before, accepting all that existed when they were born, as fixed and immutable and unchallengeable; an acceptance of the familiar, the existing, as fixed and immutable and unchallengeable that, for Le Corbusier, represented a major hindrance to the "free play of the mind"... However, Le Corbusier continues, "a simple decision can sweep away the obstacle, clearing the path for life"...

5 New Architecture & Design Exhibitions for April 2023

..."The Modulor — Measure and Proportion" at Pavillon Le Corbusier, Zürich, Switzerland Although first published in 1950 Le Corbusier's Le Modulor, his scale of proportions based on the Golden Ratio developed as a basis for, as a tool for, designing buildings and their interiors responsive to and meaningful for humans, was the result of not only a great many years research and consideration by Le Corbusier, research that saw numerous changes to the basic, idealised, human body from which everything else is and was abstracted, but also arose from positions to proportions and dimensions that Le Corbusier had developed in the earliest days of his career in his native La Chaux-de-Fonds... A journey to Le Modulor that the Pavillon Le Corbusier, Zürich, aim to sketch and elucidate in their 2023 exhibtion The Modulor — Measure and Proportion via a presentation of, and amongst others exhibits: natural objects, including seashells and plants in which the Golden Ratio can be measured; of historical proposals for a scale of human proportions, that chain in which Le Modulor is a link; and also a documentation of Le Corbusier's research and considerations, the workings that led to the 1950 publication...

5 New Architecture & Design Exhibitions for February 2022

...Having studied engineering in Athens Iannis Xenakis was forced to flee Greece in the late 1940s against the background of the Civil War, and landed in Paris where he found a position as an engineer in the office of Le Corbusier, with whom, as previously discussed, he contributed to projects such as, and amongst others, l’Unité d’Habitation in Marseille or the new city of Chandigarh in northern India, and also developed la bouteille for Le Corbusier's Poème électronique at the 1958 World's Fair in Brussels... If a bouteille Le Corbusier was unwilling to publicly acknowledge as Xenakis', leading to a parting of the ways...

Le Corbusier and Color at the Museum für Gestaltung, Pavillon Le Corbusier, Zürich

...One could be forgiven for thinking that little would be as pointless as a Le Corbusier colouring-in book... So singularly achromatic is the popular understanding of Le Corbusier, a lack of colour reinforced by the dour, austere, round bespectacled, persona which so universally defines Le Corbusier: what, one asks oneself, could there possibly be to colour in a Le Corbusier colouring-in book?...

Design. Colour. Theory.: Amédée Ozenfant – Colour

...Born on April 15th 1886 in Saint Quentin, France, Amédée Ozenfant studied painting in Paris, and where, in the late-1910s, he co-established the artistic movement Purism, a movement arising as a response to criticisms of Cubism, and a movement co-established with the, then, Charles-Edouard Jeanneret, the, future, Le Corbusier, and thus with that creative with whom Amédée Ozenfant is most commonly popularly associated... Beyond his own painting, in many regards more important than his own painting, is and was Amédée Ozenfant's work as an author and teacher: the latter seeing him operate art schools in first Paris, then London and subsequently New York; the former, again most popularly associated with Le Corbusier, with whom Ozenfant both co-published two art history/theory books and also co-published the culture review L'Esprit Nouveau, for which the pair realised numerous joint and solo texts...

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