Dezeen Magazine

Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscapes

MoMA announces major Le Corbusier retrospective

News: a major retrospective of the work of celebrated architect Le Corbusier is to open at the Museum of Modern Art in New York this June.

Entitled Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscapes, the exhibition will feature the architecture, design, art, photography and writings of the French architect, with a focus on the different places, buildings and landscapes he visited and imagined throughout his life and career.

The show will be divided into four sections, covering the landscape of found objects, the domestic landscape, the architectural landscape of the modern city and the vast territories the architect masterplanned. It will include five reconstructed interiors, as well as silent movies made by Le Corbusier in the 1930s, original models, sound recordings and watercolour paintings.

Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscapes

The exhibition is set to open at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) on 15 June and will run until 23 September. It will be curated by architect and historian Jean-Louis Cohen and will also travel to the Fundació "la Caixa" museums in Madrid and Barcelona in 2014.

Le Corbusier is commonly regarded as one of the architectural masters of the twentieth century. Born in 1887 under the name Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, he coined the pseudonym in the 1920s, before going on to design iconic buildings such as the Villa Savoye in Poissy (model pictured, top), the Chapel of Notre Dame du Haut in Ronchamp and the Unité d'Habitation in Marseille.

See all our stories about Le Corbusier, or see more stories about MoMA.

Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscapes

Here's the full press release from MoMA:

The Museum of Modern Art presents major retrospective on the full range of Le Corbusier's artistic output

For the first time in its history, The Museum of Modern Art presents a comprehensive exhibition on the work of Le Corbusier (Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, French, born Switzerland, 1887–1965), encompassing his work as architect, interior designer, artist, city planner, writer, and photographer. An Atlas of Modern Landscapes, on view from June 15 through September 23, 2013, reveals the ways in which Le Corbusier observed and imagined landscapes throughout his career, using all the artistic mediums and techniques at his disposal, from early watercolors of Italy, Greece, and Turkey, to sketches of India, and from photographs of his formative journeys to architectural models of his large-scale projects. All of these dimensions of his artistic process, including major paintings and five reconstructed interiors, are presented in the largest exhibition ever produced in New York of Le Corbusier’s protean and influential oeuvre. Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscapes draws on MoMA’s own collection, and substantially on exclusive loans from the Paris-based Le Corbusier Foundation. MoMA is the only U.S. venue for the exhibition, which will travel to Fundació "la Caixa" in Madrid (April 1–June 29, 2014), and to Fundació "la Caixa" in Barcelona (July 15–October 19, 2014). The exhibition is organized by guest curator Jean-Louis Cohen, Sheldon H. Solow Professor in the History of Architecture, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, with Barry Bergdoll, The Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design at MoMA.

Le Corbusier constantly observed and imagined landscapes. These are deployed panoramically in the exhibition not only through his paintings and drawings of sites and cities, but also through original models, photographs, sound recordings, and even recently discovered silent films shot by Le Corbusier himself in the 1930s. Following a path from his youth in the Swiss Jura mountains to his death on the shores of the French Riviera, the exhibition focuses on four types of landscapes, observed or conceived at different scales, and documented in all the genres he practiced during six decades: the landscape of found objects; the domestic landscape; the architectural landscape of the modern city; and the vast territories he planned.

From the "typical objects" featured in his Purist still lifes to the "objects of poetic reaction" that inspired his paintings from the 1930s through the 1950s, the landscape of found objects is mainly documented with major paintings by Le Corbusier. Beginning with the interiors he designed for the watch-making industry of his native La Chaux-de-Fonds, in Switzerland, five reconstructed interiors, featuring original furniture, vividly present his concepts for domestic landscapes, and the notion of houses operating as machines to view landscapes. The dialectic between the picturesque perception of city form and the grand patterns that determined many of his large building projects is revealed as the generator of his architectural landscapes. Finally, projects such as the plans for Rio de Janeiro or Algiers, born out of the interpretation of urban geography, and the designs for the new Indian city of Chandigarh reveal how extended territories were interpreted as open landscapes.

Twenty-five years after Le Corbusier, une encyclopédie, published in Paris on the occasion of the centennial of his birth, a major multi-author sourcebook mapping Le Corbusier’s projects, plans, and worldwide travel will be published, under the same title as the exhibition, by The Museum of Modern Art. Building on the notion of the centrality of concepts of landscape and territory in the work of Le Corbusier, the publication brings together an array of authoritative but fresh viewpoints, and promises to provide a reference tool for years to come.

Le Corbusier: An Atlas of Modern Landscapes
June 15–September 23, 2013
The Joan and Preston Robert Tisch Exhibition Gallery, sixth floor