There is no such thing as a “pure” sculptor, a “pure” painter, or a “pure” architect. The three-dimensional event finds its fulfilment in an artistic whole at the service of poetry, Le Corbusier
Mention Le Corbusier and your mind will immediately conjure up images of concrete high-rises and lessons about his iconic five principles, yet there is much more behind the famous Swiss-French modernist. Apart from being one of the most important architects in history and a staple influence in building, urban planning, design, fashion and even hair styling, Le Corbusier was also a painter. An exhibition opening this week at Stockholm's Moderna Museet will try to trace new perspectives through his works and will also include sculptures and paintings.
Entitled “Le Corbusier: The Secret Laboratory” and curated by Jean-Louis Cohen, professor at New York University and author of many books about the architect, with associate curator Pascal Mory, the event is actually the first exhibition in Northern Europe covering Le Corbusier's entire oeuvre.
“Le Corbusier is a key figure when it comes to understanding 20th-century modernity and contemporary living, and the way that many of his ideas were born in his painter’s studio is a revelation,” stated Daniel Birnbaum, director of Moderna Museet, in a press release.
Five sections will take visitors on a tour of his purist paintings and 1920s villas, the rediscovery of vernacular values in the 1930s, his preoccupation with the synthesis of the arts after 1945, the complex reminiscences of his late work, and Le Corbusier’s relationship with Sweden (plans for the urbanisation of Stockholm and the museum he designed for the Ahrenberg collection will also be exhibited).
Passionate fans and researchers will easily spot the correspondences between the rectangular or curved forms in his paintings and his buildings, but the exhibition will prove interesting also for those visitors who may not know their Le Corbusier syllabus so well since it will show through the juxtaposition of different works how a building by Le Corbusier can be a still life and how a still life can be a piece of architecture.
There will be 200 works on display, including paintings, landscape drawings, sculptures, tapestries, furniture, articles, architectural drawings, models of buildings and of entire city plans, books, and photographs, and all the pieces exhibited will prove that “architecture is the synthesis of the major arts. Architecture is form, volume, colours, acoustics and music”, as Le Corbusier stated.
If you think you may be missing this event don't despair: Jean-Louis Cohen is currently involved also in the preparations for “Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscapes” set to open at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in June 2013. Looks like this may be a very Le Corbusier year.
Moment - Le Corbusier's Secret Laboratory, Moderna Museet, Stockholm, Sweden, 19th January 2013-18th April 2013
I was dreaming (first version) 1953, © Le Corbusier/ BUS 2013
The Sea, 1964, © Le Corbusier/ BUS 2013
Plan de Stockholm. Nord Sud A / Ouest Est B /Est Ouest C / Trois coupes urbaines / Annotations 3071, 1933, © Le Corbusier/ BUS 2013
Plan de Stockholm. 1ère étape / Plan de situation avec implantation des redents type B et type A avec voirie, 1933, © Le Corbusier/ BUS 2013
The poem of the Right Angle plates 6, 1955, © Le Corbusier/ BUS 2013
Nature morte Indépendants, 1922, © Le Corbusier/BUS 2013Member of the Boxxet Network of Blogs, Videos and Photos
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