Skyscrapers of 2018: Soaring Beyond the Archetypal Crystal Tower

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© Viktor Sukharukov © Viktor Sukharukov Either as singular outcroppings or as part of a bustling center, skyscrapers are neck-craning icons across major city centers in the world. A modern trope of extreme success and wealth, the skyscraper has become an architectural symbol for vibrant urban hubs and commercial powerhouses dominating cities like New York, Dubai, and Singapore. While skyscrapers are omnipresent, 2018 introduced new approaches, technologies, and locations to the high-rise typology. From variations in materiality to form, designs for towers have started to address aspects beyond simply efficiency and height, proposing new ways for the repetitive form to bring unique qualities to city skylines. Below, a few examples of proposals and trends from 2018 that showcase the innovative ideas at work: 

Huamo Lot 10 / Kohn Pederson Fox Associates (KPF)

Courtesy of Plompmozes Courtesy of Plompmozes

Self-proclaimed as a "new form of participatory urbanism", KPF's three-tower scheme in Shanghai is designed for commercial office

Courtesy of Sumitomo Forestry Co.
Courtesy of Woods Bagot
Courtesy of Sergey Skuratov Architects
© Virgile Simon Bertrand
© ZMG China
© Rafael de la-Hoz Arquitectos
Courtesy of UN Studio
© Viktor Sukharukov
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White Arkitekter Reinvents the Water Tower Typology with Horizontal Concave Facade

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Courtesy of White Arkitekter Courtesy of White Arkitekter

A series of concave concrete panels hoisted on slender plank-like columns sit amongst the vast rural plains of Sweden, silently redefining the typology of an otherwise utilitarian structure. White Arkitekter's recent proposal for a water tower in Varberg is a slim horizontal structure, deviating from the typical, vertical and round design. Titled VÅGA, it features two tanks for storing water within its unique shape that may actually be better suited to its purpose.

Courtesy of White Arkitekter Courtesy of White Arkitekter

A winning entry in a competition hosted by the local water management company Vivab, VÅGA was designed to create an iconic landmark that would act as both a service and a symbol for the town. The tower can store 10,000 cubic meters of water under the right amount of pressure, with the possibility of holding more with the city's expansion.

Courtesy of White Arkitekter Courtesy of White Arkitekter

Placed horizontally, the cisterns are

Courtesy of White Arkitekter
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Will Snøhetta’s Redesign Calm the Outcry From Its Original Controversial Proposal?

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Courtesy of LMNB & Snøhetta Courtesy of LMNB & Snøhetta

Labeled as "vandalism" and "murder" of an icon of postmodernism, Oslo-based firm Snøhetta's redesign proposal for Phillip Johnson and John Burgee's AT&T Headquarters was received with instantaneous backlash across the architectural community last year. Architect Robert A. M. Stern, marched alongside a protest outside 550 Madison Avenue, and even critic Norman Foster, who never claimed to have any sympathy for the postmodern movement, still vocalized his sentiments that "[the building] is an important part of our heritage and should be respected as such."

A rejection of the bland and cold functionality of Midtown's crystal skyscrapers, the AT&T building was intended to encourage a more playful approach architecture in the corporate world; the crazy socks beneath a three-piece suit. It was not without controversy. Upon its completion, the building was derided for its decorative and outsized pediment and occasionally dark interior spaces. Indeed, the building's arched entry spaces were among

Courtesy of LMNB & Snøhetta
Courtesy of LMNB & Snøhetta
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Iconic American Buildings Re-Envisioned in the Gothic Revival Style

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Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum / Frank Lloyd Wright. Image Courtesy of Angie's List Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum / Frank Lloyd Wright. Image Courtesy of Angie's List With its intricate ornamentation and complex ribbed vaulting, Gothic architecture introduced a slenderness and exuberance that was not seen before in medieval Europe. Epitomized by pointed arches, flying buttresses, and tall spires, Gothic structures were easily identifiable as they reached new heights not previously achievable, creating enigmatic interior atmospheres. Several centuries later, a new appreciation for Victorian-era architecture was reborn in the United States with the Gothic Revival movement most famously depicted by Chicago's Tribune Tower. A series of computer-graphics (CG) renderings done by Angie's List reinterpret some of America's iconic architecture from the 20th century to mirror buildings from the Middle Ages. View the republished content from Angie's List complete with each building's informative descriptions below.

Golden Gate Bridge (San Francisco, California)

Courtesy of Angie's List Courtesy of Angie's List

Engineered by Joseph Strauss and Charles Ellis alongside architect Irving

Courtesy of Angie's List
Courtesy of Angie's List
Courtesy of Angie's List
Courtesy of Angie's List
Courtesy of Angie's List
Courtesy of Angie's List
Courtesy of Angie's List
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Treasuring History: Photographs of Tadao Ando’s First European Villa Restoration

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Courtesy of FABRICA Courtesy of FABRICA Inducing a surreal physical experience through minimal maneuvers, buildings with smooth concrete panels and simple geometric volumes instinctively hint at the work of Japanese architect Tadao Ando. At an ongoing exhibition at the Centre Pompidou, photographs of the headquarters of Fabrica, Ando's first European commission in 1992, are showcased. Located near the city of Treviso, the building was an old villa restored to become a thriving creative research center. Villa Pastega Manera, built on an area of 51,000 square meters, went through a rigorous study of traditional construction techniques and material sampling to commence the redesign. The photographs feature the harmonious integration between the historical structure and seamless renovations. 
Courtesy of FABRICA Courtesy of FABRICA

Surrounding an elliptical porticoed square, the various programs such as the laboratories, offices, and the helicoidal library can be accessed by a broad staircase. Originally porticoed extensions of the Veneto villa, the

Courtesy of FABRICA
Courtesy of FABRICA
Courtesy of FABRICA
Courtesy of FABRICA
Courtesy of FABRICA
Courtesy of FABRICA
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NLÉ Architects’ MFS IIIx3 Prototype Launched in China Explores Ecological Intelligence

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Courtesy of NLÉ Architects Courtesy of NLÉ Architects As part of a collaboration between the Centre Pompidou and the Mao Jihong Arts Foundation, the Cosmopolis #1.5: 'Enlarged Intelligence' exhibition features the developments of NLÉ Architects' Makoko Floating School. The Minjiang Floating System (MFS IIIx3), the fourth prototype and the third iteration of the prefabricated self-built system for water, investigates methods to counter the challenges posed by urbanization and climate change. Earlier prototypes of the Makoko Floating School include the Waterfront Atlas (MFS II) launched in Venice, Italy and the Minne Floating School (MFS III) in Bruges, Belgium. The project, initially developed for the water in Lagos, is now usable in all these sites including the Jincheng Lake in Chengdu.
Courtesy of NLÉ Architects Courtesy of NLÉ Architects

Connected to the ancient existing irrigation system used along the Min River and Dujiangyan that has long since kept the Sichuan province fertile and hazard-free, the

Courtesy of NLÉ Architects
Courtesy of NLÉ Architects
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Frida Escobedo, Designer of the Serpentine Pavilion, Among 2019 RIBA International Fellows

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The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) unveiled the seven laureates of the 2019 International Fellowships,
a "lifetime honor allows recipients to use the initials Int FRIBA after their name," recognizes the contributions that architects across the world outside of the UK have made in the field of architecture. Previously awarded to architects such as Jeanne Gang and Phillip Cox, the annual Fellowship emphasizes not only the impact of architects' work in their respective homelands but also their global influence. A juror's committee, consisting of Ben Derbyshire, RIBA President; Lady Patty Hopkins, a 1994 RIBA Gold Medalist; Bob Shiel, a professor at the Bartlett School of Architecture; Wasfi Kani, a 2018 Honorary Fellow; and Pat Woodward RIBA, of Matthew Lloyd Architects, awarded the 2019 Fellows. The fellowships will be presented in London in February 2019. The laureates of RIBA's 2019 International Fellowships are as following:

Frida Escobedo

Courtesy of RIBA Comms Courtesy of
Courtesy of RIBA Comms
Courtesy of RIBA Comms
Courtesy of RIBA Comms
Courtesy of RIBA Comms
Courtesy of RIBA Comms
Courtesy of RIBA Comms
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Rethinking the Future of Air Travel: Students and Fentress Architects Collaborate in Venice Biennale Exhibition

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Deemed to be the homogenized "spaces of circulation, consumption, and communication", airports around the world appear to be almost indistinguishable in their dissolution of identity. Despite technological changes in air travel, the typology of the airport has remained consistently ordinary.

In the European Cultural Center’s biennial exhibition, students from North Carolina State University’s College of Design worked alongside Curtis Fentress, Ana-Maria Drughi, and Joshua Stephens of Fentress Architects to propose innovative concepts for reshaping air travel. PLANE—SITE’s latest film from their series of short videos of the Time-Space-Existence exhibition showcases this design collaboration.

Responding to the prompt of redesigning the normative airport, five teams integrated advanced transportation technologies in relation to their location's culture, geography, and economy in different cities around the world. Instead of simply being a transportation hub, the airport was considered to be a vital urban site of connection and exchange to discover the full

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The Appalachian “Long Lodge” Optimizes Mass Timber Construction for Sustainable Design

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Courtesy of Yueqi Li Courtesy of Yueqi Li The Honor Award Winner of the 2018 Maine Mass Timber Design Competition, the 'Long Lodge' proposal for residential cabins along the Appalachian Trail, highlights simple yet creative ways to spotlight the possibilities and natural beauty of timber as a construction material. As a team of four, the architects designed a lodge that not only serves as a temporary living space but rather becomes a memorable spatial experience through the effects of the structural design choices.
Courtesy of Yueqi Li Courtesy of Yueqi Li

The sharp verticality of the native pines is juxtaposed with the striated horizontality of the lodge, emphasizing the otherworldliness of the site. The full elongation of the lodge is only revealed amidst the forest as visitors approach and near the site.  Encapsulating a subtle dynamism, the two upturned wings of the lodge appear to be readying for movement. The void featuring the Caribou Pond Trail in

Courtesy of Yueqi Li
Courtesy of Yueqi Li
Courtesy of Yueqi Li
Courtesy of Yueqi Li
Courtesy of Yueqi Li
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Stefano Corbo Studio’s Design Seeks to Transform a Prague School into an “Autonomous Micro-City”

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Courtesy of Stefano Corbo Studio Courtesy of Stefano Corbo Studio Prague's architecture is known for a patchwork of buildings ranging in styles and eras. A recent proposal for the redesign of the Trojska Skola aims to supplement a similar cohesive attitude to the space. Titled, Dissonant Unity, the project designed by Stefano Corbo Studio explores the ways to incorporate new programs and increased public space to an existing grammar and primary school with an attached sports center, auditorium, and cafeteria.
Courtesy of Stefano Corbo Studio Courtesy of Stefano Corbo Studio

The original construction from 1928 will house the grammar school that includes multiple classrooms, multimedia spaces, and storage areas, while preserving the basement as is. The 1951 and 2010 additions will be altered to create a new building for the primary school featuring a large multipurpose hall on the ground level with further recreational program on the upper floors. In correlation to these spaces, the new building accommodates

Courtesy of Stefano Corbo Studio
Courtesy of Stefano Corbo Studio
Courtesy of Stefano Corbo Studio
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“Plastic Island” Imagines the Possibilities of Reusing Oceanic Waste in Architecture

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Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr

With rising sea levels and incessant consumption of plastic, the state of the earth's oceans is rapidly deteriorating. Instead of discarding or burning this plastic, architects Erik Goksøyr and Emily-Claire Goksøyr questioned whether any architectural potential exists in this neglected material. By conducting an extensive material study, the duo designed three prototypes to postulate this theory. 

Though starting out as a humble thesis, this project is being actualized under the organization, Out of Ocean. From the shores of the Koster Islands in Sweden, plastic samples were collected and studied for their various material performance in areas such as color, texture, light, and translucency.

Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr

In their first iteration, titled House of Texture, the plastic undergoes heat and compression that causes deformation and as a result, varied texture. From smooth and glossy to rough and jagged, these fragments can be combined together in

Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr
Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr
Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr
Courtesy of Emily-Claire Goksøyr
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Reclaiming Polish Brutalism: Discover the Emblems of Communism

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Falowiec / Gdańsk. Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Falowiec / Gdańsk. Image Courtesy of Wikimedia

To strip a city of its architecture is to erase its history altogether. Despite a widespread public distaste for Brutalism, the brutalist era in architecture often went hand in hand with political movements promising an egalitarian vision in post-Stalinist Poland. What may now be considered austere and overbearing was originally intended to be anything but; the buildings today carry both an appreciation for their legacy and the burden of unwanted memories.

In a recent article in the New York Times, writer Akash Kapur documents his visit to Poland, bringing readers into his experiences and observations of this complex response to Polish architecture. From sharing its history to short anecdotes from interviews, the piece postulates whether these relics can become alive again.

Courtesy of Wikimedia Courtesy of Wikimedia

More than just changing tastes, the buildings in Poland showcase its long history of invasion, genocide,

Falowiec / Gdańsk
Falowiec / Gdańsk. Image Courtesy of Wikimedia
© Marcin Lachowicz
© Marcin Lachowicz
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In Conversation With Marc Neveu, Executive Editor of the Journal of Architectural Education, On Practice, Pedagogy, And Diversity

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For young creatives, curious explorers, or simply multitaskers, The Midnight Charette's weekly podcasts provide a provocative and entertaining take on design and architectural discourse. Hosted by David Lee and Marina Bourderonnet, the segments aim to explore ideas beyond everyday conversation and engage with a multitude of individuals in the design field. In their recent discussion featuring Marc Neveu, the Executive Editor of the Journal of Architectural Education (JAE) and head of the Architecture Program at Arizona State University (ASU), the duo covers a broad range of topics related to professional practice and architectural pedagogies.

With the responsibility of publishing the JAE biannually, Neveu shares his opinions on the need for print scholarship in an increasingly digitized world: 

“The number of outlets that are not peer-reviewed has certainly increased. For a design faculty member in architecture to get tenure and promotion is really difficult because a building or project is

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Zaha Hadid Architects Proposal Shortlisted For Sverdlovsk Philharmonic, But Uncertainty Over Buildability Remains

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Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects To activate the historical and cultural significance of music in the city of Yekaterinburg, a design competition to create a new concert hall was announced earlier in April. From the 47 proposals that were submitted, the top three architectural concepts were recently selected by the jury committee, awarding first place to Zaha Hadid Architects, and the two runner-up positions to Alvisi Kirimoto + Partners and Robert Gutowski Architects respectively. Despite selecting ZHA's proposal as the project laureate, all three projects are still in contention as the feasibility studies are ongoing. For the snowy climate of this Russian city, the buildability of the design continues to be under debate.  Having the buzz of a world-renowned firm definitely sparks more interest in the creation of the center, however, it draws the question as to whether such a proposal is suitable for the climate and
Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects
Courtesy of Zaha Hadid Architects
Courtesy of ALVISI KIRIMOTO & PARTNERS
Courtesy of ALVISI KIRIMOTO & PARTNERS
Courtesy of Robert Gutowski Architects
Courtesy of Robert Gutowski Architects
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Sasaki Revitalizes Vacant Rail Yard to Create Florida’s New Central Park

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Courtesy of Sasaki Courtesy of Sasaki

With the aim to create the self-proclaimed “Central Park of Lakeland,” architecture firm Sasaki Associates is converting Bonnet Springs Park in Central Florida from a former CSX railyards property to an ecological hub. Initially, a vacant brownfield, the site is currently undergoing environmental remediation to tackle the years of industrial damage, with plans to be open to the public by 2020.

Courtesy of Sasaki Courtesy of Sasaki

Using creative environmental mechanisms to ready the site for construction, the architects plan to stockpile the arsenic and petroleum hydrocarbons prevalent in over a third of the 180-acre of the land as landscaping elements. The mounds may reach a 90-foot grade, completely altering the existing topological conditions.

Courtesy of Sasaki Courtesy of Sasaki

A significant feature of the site, the constructed wetland gardens are connected to a degraded stream corridor that carries the stormwater to prevent pollutants from entering Lake Bonnet. This allows clean water to

Courtesy of Sasaki
Courtesy of Sasaki
Continue reading "Sasaki Revitalizes Vacant Rail Yard to Create Florida’s New Central Park"

Sasaki Revitalizes Vacant Rail Yard to Create Florida’s New Central Park

    <figure>
Courtesy of Sasaki Courtesy of Sasaki

With the aim to create the self-proclaimed “Central Park of Lakeland,” architecture firm Sasaki Associates is converting Bonnet Springs Park in Central Florida from a former CSX railyards property to an ecological hub. Initially, a vacant brownfield, the site is currently undergoing environmental remediation to tackle the years of industrial damage, with plans to be open to the public by 2020.

Courtesy of Sasaki Courtesy of Sasaki

Using creative environmental mechanisms to ready the site for construction, the architects plan to stockpile the arsenic and petroleum hydrocarbons prevalent in over a third of the 180-acre of the land as landscaping elements. The mounds may reach a 90-foot grade, completely altering the existing topological conditions.

Courtesy of Sasaki Courtesy of Sasaki

A significant feature of the site, the constructed wetland gardens are connected to a degraded stream corridor that carries the stormwater to prevent pollutants from entering Lake Bonnet. This allows clean water to

Courtesy of Sasaki
Courtesy of Sasaki
Continue reading "Sasaki Revitalizes Vacant Rail Yard to Create Florida’s New Central Park"

A Pocket Guide to New York’s Art Deco Skyline

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Empire State Building / Shreve, Lamb & Harmon Empire State Building / Shreve, Lamb & Harmon In a permanent state of architectural transience, New York City continues to be adorned with new skyscrapers with every passing day. Historically fueled by financial prosperity coupled with the demand for commercial space, the only way to continue to build was up. Blue Crow Media’s latest map, “Art Deco New York Map” showcases over sixty buildings from the era, celebrating the eclectic nature of Art Deco architecture that is so deeply inherent to the identity of the city.
New School for Social Research Auditorium / Joseph Urban New School for Social Research Auditorium / Joseph Urban

At the forefront of modernity, the Art Deco movement embraced vivid colors and geometric patterns that currently grace the New York skyline. Though originating in Paris, the United States was the first to deploy the style in such a widespread manner. From corporate and government office buildings to train stations and department stores and

Radio City Music Hall / Edward Durell Stone and Donald Deskey
© Jason Woods / Blue Crow Media
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Challenge Studio’s Award-Winning Design Envisions a New Residential Typology

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Courtesy of Challenge Studio Courtesy of Challenge Studio In the age of skyscrapers, the immediate solution to housing is to build up and duplicate single units in the plan. In contrast, the Zafereniah Tower designed by Challenge Studio, project laureate of the recent 2018 Architizer A+ Award, proposed a conceptual endeavor as a prototype for mid-rise, multi-unit housing. The Tehran-based firm won both the Jury and Popular Choice Awards for their response to the prompt for a design that "champion[s] its potential for a positive impact on everyday life."
Courtesy of Challenge Studio Courtesy of Challenge Studio

Consisting of stacked units that act as tri-axis modules, the scheme features two central blocks off-center. The cohesive interlocking of these modules enables the creation of different unit types and deviates from the ordinary double-loaded corridor strategy. 

Courtesy of Challenge Studio Courtesy of Challenge Studio

By using formal strategies of shifting, the modules begin to generate new intermediary programmatic zones enabling

Courtesy of Challenge Studio
Courtesy of Challenge Studio
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BIG Reveals Skyscraper Design for First Project in South America

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Courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group Courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group Soon to become the tallest building in Quito, IQON is Bjarke Ingels Group's first project to be built in South America. Currently undergoing construction, the largely residential building is a curved tower with gradually protruding balconies. Encased between the dense city and the park, the self-dubbed "urban tree farm" aims not only to encompass the surrounding views of the volcanoes and nature beyond but also to integrate the landscape within the building itself.
Courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group Courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group

Stacked 33 floors tall, the series of terraced concrete boxes provide 35,000 square meters of floor space. Each box rotates to form apartment units with balconies along both north and south facades, providing extensive views and a sense of openness.

Courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group Courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group

The scheme of stepped terraces opens up to create a public plaza at the base of the building,

Courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group
Courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group
Courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group
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Le Corbusier’s Paintings Showcased for the First Time Since 1966

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Trois baigneuses, 1935. Image © The Foundation Le Corbusier / FLC ADGAP Trois baigneuses, 1935. Image © The Foundation Le Corbusier / FLC ADGAP

They say one cannot separate art from the artist, or perhaps in this case, the artist from the architect. Arguably one of the most criticized architects, Le Corbusier is often portrayed as cold and controlling. Depicting his more dreamy and humorous nature, the Nasjonalmuseet's exhibition titled, “Le Corbusier by the Sea,” draws upon his memories from his summer travels along the coast of southwest France.

Hosted in Villa Stenersen, one of the National Museum's venues, the exhibition showcases Le Corbusier's work as an artist during the period 1926-36. Not only does the exhibition include fifteen of his reproduced paintings alongside a collection of sketches, but also screens two films from Le Corbusier's own footage of his surrounding views.
La pêcheuse d'huitres, 1935. Image © The Foundation Le Corbusier / FLC ADGAP La pêcheuse d'huitres, 1935. Image © The Foundation Le Corbusier / FLC ADGAP

Like most

Baigneuse, barque et coquillage. Image © The Foundation Le Corbusier / FLC ADGAP
Le déjeuner près du pare, 1928. Image © The Foundation Le Corbusier / FLC ADGAP
Le Corbusier & Yvonne Gallis. Image © The Foundation Le Corbusier / FLC ADGAP
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