Le Corbusier: Themes/Discourse/Figures

Half a century after his death, Le Corbusier remains the most emblematic architect of the twentieth century and a major reference for the architectural discipline. The quality of the projects and built works explains part of this enduring fascination. Another explanation has to do with the themes explored by Le Corbusier. In the explorations of the architect, projects, buildings, but also books, drawings, paintings, and sculptures play a role. The seminar will explore a series of these themes, their articulation in the discourse of modernism, and their relevance for contemporary architectural thought. The ambition is to use Le Corbusier as a means to re-read modernism and its inheritance in relation to some of the issues, both practical and theoretical, we are currently facing. A special attention will be paid to the projected and built works, from Dom-ino to Chandigarh, as well as to their relation to the texts produced by the architect such as Towards an Architecture or Precisions on the Present State of Architecture and City Planning.

Among the themes that will be discussed in the seminar:

— the beginnings of architecture and the question of the primitive
— architecture and the measure of man
— machine aesthetics, machinic epistemology
— historicity, emotion and memory
— space and materials
— architecture and pictoriality
— the question of the sacred
— writing architecture and urbanism
— urbanism and landscape
— housing and dwelling
— building in the non-Western world