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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments

Frequently reviled by feminists of our generation, Le Corbusier was in fact one of the few Modernist architects to give serious consideration to the role of women in contemporary society, believing them to be instigators of change and an important force in the advancement of society.

Ranging in scope from Le Corbusier’s interest in fashion, housework and sex to a close analysis of the philosophies underlying his architecture, his fascination with Orphism, his artwork and his buildings, this book examines the ramifications of his interest in feminism in all aspects of his life. A disparity between his idealised view of womanhood and the reality of the women he knew and loved is revealed.

The book is essential reading for anybody who is interested in the way the relationship between the sexes impacts on architecture, and in the personal and professional life of Le Corbusier. Encompassing much new material – including the Provisional Theatre at La Sainte Baume, designed by Le Corbusier but never before published – it provides a valuable resource for those who remain unconvinced by standard histories of this enigmatic and complex figure.

Review

“…compelling reading…you will find much here to enjoy…” (Architecture Today, April 2004)

Synopsis

This is a revealing book which, for the first time, investigates the central influence of feminism in the work of Le Corbusier; one of the most important and revered architects of all time.

The text covers Le Corbusier’s upbringing and training and sets this in the context of the cultural atmosphere of his time, covering issues of gender and religion. It reveals aspects of his private life such as personal relationships, which have barely been explored before as no biography currently exists. Furthermore, the author reveals, for the first time in print, a previously undiscovered and unpublished Le Corbusier building, making this book an incredibly significant addition to existing literature on the great man.

In short, the new evidence and theories contained in this volume amount to major revelations about this hugely revered and central architectural figure of the 20th Century.

Synopsis

Dieses Buch untersucht erstmals, welchen bedeutenden Einfluss der Feminismus auf Le Corbusiers Arbeit hatte. Der Band enth lt eine F lle neuer Erkenntnisse und Theorien ber diese viel bewunderte und verehrte Schl sselfigur in der Architektur des 20. Jahrhunderts. Besprochen wird Le Corbusiers Erziehung und Ausbildung im Zusammenhang mit der kulturellen Atmosph re seiner Zeit, wobei auch Fragen zu Geschlecht und Religion Beachtung finden. Le Corbusier: Architect and Feminist enth llt aber nicht nur Aspekte von Le Corbusiers Privatleben, sondern auch seiner pers nlichen Beziehungen, die bislang kaum erforscht wurden, da es keine Biographie gibt. Auch schreibt der Autor hier zum ersten Mal ber ein bisher unentdeckt und unver ffentlicht gebliebenes Werk von Le Corbusier und leistet damit einen bedeutenden Beitrag zur bestehenden Literatur ber diesen gro en Architekten.

About the Author

FLORA SAMUEL is an architect and a lecturer at the Welsh School of Architecture, Cardiff, where she teaches design and history. She has written widely on the subject of Le Corbusier and is interested in unearthing aspects of his work that other researchers have ignored or discounted. Previous publications include Nature and Space: Aalto and Le Corbusier, written with Sarah Menin.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements.

List of Illustrations.

Illustration Credits.

Preface.

Introduction.

PART ONE: REAL.

Chapter 1.  Intimate Relationships.

Marie Charlotte Amélie Jeanneret-Perret: his mother.

Yvonne Gallis: his wife

Intimate Relations

Josephine Baker • Marguerite Tjader Harris • Minette De Silva.

Conclusion.

Chapter 2.  Professional Relationships.

Women Abroad.

Women at Work.

Little Paris Birds • Married women • Women Writers.

Women Clients.

Villa Meyer • Villa Stein de Monzie • Maison de Mandrot • Heidi Weber House.

Summary.

Women Collaborators.

Le Corbusier’s ‘best propagandists’ • Intellectual support.

Women Designers.

Charlotte Perriand • Eileen Gray • Jane Drew.

Conclusion.

Chapter 3.  Feminism, fashion and physical culture.

Feminism in France at the beginning of the twentieth century.

Feminism and Physic al Culture.

The Anti-Corset league • Dance • Sport.

Fashion.

Fashionable society • Paul Poiret and the development of a new feminine aesthetic • Male adornment • Fashion magazines • Fashion and furniture.

Conclusion.

PART TWO: IDEAL.

Chapter 4.  Orphism and the quest for harmonious unity.

Origins of Le Corbusier’s interest in Orphism.

Catharism • Rabelais and Cervantes • Education and Self-Education • Synthesis.

Orphism.

Pythagoras • Plato and the Union of Opposites • Alchemy • Pico della Mirandola • Summary.

Orphism and the questioning of sexual roles in Early Twentieth Century Paris.

Joséphin Péladan • Guillaume Apollinaire • André Breton and the Surrealists • Jean Cocteau • Summary.

Conclusion.

Chapter 5.  Women in the art of Le Corbusier Tools of Unity.

Symbolism.

The exploitation of physical response in the pursuit of spiritual change • Geometry • Colour.

The artistic representation of women in Le Corbusier’s milieu.

Women of the East.

The emergence of the numinous woman in Le Corbusier’s painted work.

Union of Opposites.

Woman and the sea • Woman and the shell • Woman and music • All seeing woman • Ubu • La cathédrale de Sens • Siren • Taureau/Icône.

The Poem of the Right Angle 1947–1953.

Sun and water, man and woman • Flesh • Fusion: male and female • Fusion: Body and Spirit • Woman and enlightenment • Mary • Love.

Conclusion.

Chapter 6.  The cult of woman and the religious architecture of Le Corbusier.

La Sainte Baume.

Background to the project • The site • Mary Magdalene • The Basilica • Permanent City • The Museum • The Theatre • The Park • Summary.

Ronchamp.

Building and Body • The Ear • The Vase • The Marys • East Door • Summary.

Conclusion.

Chapter 7.  Sexual Harmony and the Urbanism of Le Corbusier.

Sex and Planning.

The Radiant City.

The spiritual home incarnate.

Conclusion.

Conclusion.

Selected Bibliography.

Index.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780470847473
Binding:
Trade Paperback
Publication date:
04/02/2004
Publisher:
Academy Press
Language:
English
Pages:
188
Height:
.49IN
Width:
6.68IN
Thickness:
.49 in.
LCCN:
2004274287
Number of Units:
1
Illustration:
Yes
Copyright Year:
2004
UPC Code:
2800470847475
Author:
Flora Samuel
Subject:
Architecture Special Topics
Subject:
Architecture-Architects

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