Le Corbusier in Paris 1915: Between past and future
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Citation:Schnoor, C. (2022). Le Corbusier in Paris 1915: Between Past and Future. LC. Revue de recherches sur Le Corbusier, No. 5 (2022), 84-109. doi:https://doi.org/10.4995/lc.2022.17273
Permanent link to Research Bank record:https://hdl.handle.net/10652/5690
In 1910-11, Charles-Édouard Jeanneret wrote the draft of a handbook on the visual and aesthetic perception of the city. “La Construction des villes”, never published by Le Corbusier, was based on his detailed studies of German-language literature on “Städtebau”. The manuscript came to light partially in 1977, through Harold Allen Brooks’ research, and completely in 1999, through research by the present author. It remains a crucial and fascinating source to understand Le Corbusier’s grasp of visual perception and the aesthetic needs of a city. When in the 1920s, Le Corbusier strived to be seen as avant-garde through his radical and – at times polemic – urbanistic proposals, he nevertheless built on knowledge gained through his own studies of the years 1910/11. This paper is concerned with the period in-between, the year 1915 in particular: it focuses on Jeanneret’s visit to Paris and his intention to rework the manuscript “La Construction des villes” for publication. For seven weeks, Jeanneret studies in the Bibliothèque Nationale and explores Paris on endless promenades. The primary sources, Jeanneret’s library notes and drawings, filed under B2(20) at the FLC, plus a travel notebook from a private archive that has recently come to light, allow to understand a subtle shift in Jeanneret’s view of the city, and demonstrate his ability to learn from the past for the future.
Keywords:Le Corbusier (1887-1965), La construction des villes, Städtebau, urban spaces, architectual space, enclosed space, greening of cities, picturesque in architecture
ANZSRC Field of Research:330104 Architectural history, theory and criticism, 330102 Architectural design
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