LE CORBUSIER (1887-1965)
Le Corbusier (Swiss, 1887-1965) was the pseudonym for Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, a pioneer of modern architecture, a painter, and a theorist. Born in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, Le Corbusier attended the La-Chaux-de-Fonds Art School and studied under architect René Chapallaz, who influenced Le Corbusier's early residential designs.
In 1907, the artist went to Paris to work for Auguste Perret, an architect who pioneered the use of reinforced concrete. Le Corbusier studied architecture with Josef Hoffman in 1908 and worked for Peter Behrens for six months, starting in October 1910. Le Corbusier later returned to La-Chaux-de-Fonds Art School to teach during World War I. From 1914 to 1915, he developed Domino House, an architectural model with an open floor plan, columns, and thin walls of reinforced concrete. The theories embodied in Domino House influenced Le Corbusier's projects for the next decade.
He met Amédée Ozenfant in 1918, and they established a new art movement called Purism. Together they published the Purist journal L'Esprit Nouveau. In 1922, Le Corbusier presented an urban design plan called Immeubles Villas. The housing blocks in Immeubles Villas and later his Ville Contemporaine reflected Le Corbusier's belief that modern architectural planning could raise the quality of life for city inhabitants.
In 1929, Le Corbusier began to work on the Villa Savoye. This residence provided a clear example of Le Corbusier's five points of architecture, which had been published in L'Esprit Nouveau and his 1923 book with Ozenfant called Toward an Architecture. The Villa Savoye is also considered to be an excellent example of the International style, an architectural style that also represented the beginning decades of the Modern movement. Le Corbusier, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and Walter Gropius were considered to be the pioneers of the International style. In 1935, Le Corbusier published a book on urbanism called The Radiant City. After World War II, Le Corbusier used the ideas in his book to create housing blocks around France, such as the Unité d'Habitation of Marseilles. He also designed the first planned city in India called Chandigarh. Not only did Le Corbusier design the overall layout of the city in the 1950s, but he also designed several administration buildings in Chandigarh, such as the parliament building, a university, a courthouse, and some furniture as well. The artist died on August 27, 1965.
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