Le Corbusier’s Italy

Sergi 17 Şubat 2013 tarihine kadar MAXXI'de izlenebilir.

The exhibition Le Corbusier’s Italy is organized by MAXXI Architecture to recount the influence of Italy within the work of the master of the Modern Movement Charles-Edouard Jeanneret-Gris, also known as Le Corbusier, with over 600 original drawings, sketches, watercolours, paintings and photographs.

MAXXI Director Margherita Guccione, is devoting this exhibition to Le Corbusier – the architect, sculptor, painter, celebrated thinker, father of modern town planning and master of the Modern Movement alongside Mies van der Rohe, Walter Gropius, Frank Lloyd Wright and Alvar Aalto. The exhibition is created in partnership with Paris’ Fondation Le Corbusier and benefits from the contributions of an academic committee comprised of leading Corbusian scholars.

Adopting a chronological and thematic format the exhibition includes 320 original documents and 300 photographs that represent the influence of Italy on the training and work of the master – from the first trips early in the 20th Century to the unbuilt projects for the Olivetti Electronic Calculation Centre at Rho and the hospital in Venice from the 1960s.

The exhibition features a variety of documents including notes taken during trips, studies, cultural exchanges and personal aspirations. Works on view include, sketches of the Italian monuments in carnets de voyage, the 18th century reproduction of the plan of ancient Rome by Pirro Ligorio of which Le Corbusier reproduced a fragment to illustrate his Leçon de Rome, correspondence with Pier Luigi Nervi, six large drawings sketched during the conference of June 1934 in Milan. Such works document the architect’s complex “Italian” education which was stimulated by prolonged direct experience and in-depth research at the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris. A wealth of photographic material also accompanies the exhibition, providing an integrated reading of a lesser-known Le Corbusier in dialogue with his artistic and architectural contemporaries, unveiling the full breadth of his intellectual stature.

The exhibition design by the Italian architect Umberto Riva is a sophisticated tribute to the master, with a rhythmic sequence of wooden panels complimenting both the extraordinary Corbusian drawings and MAXXI’s contemporary architecture.

Particular attention has been paid to Le Corbusier the painter, and to the journal L’Esprit Nouveau which he directed with the Purist painter Amedeé Ozenfant between 1920 and 1925. Significance has also been placed on his relationships with the Italian periodicals, in particular Valori Plastici, and to the dispute with the painter Gino Severini over the issue of Proportion. His paintings from the Purism period are on show together with works by Carlo Carrà, Giorgio Morandi and Severini.

During this period Le Corbusier established relationships with the young Rationalist architects in Turin, Milan, Rome and Venice. This section presents evidence of Le Corbusier’s cultural and professional exchanges with Piero Bottoni, Luigi Figini, Alberto Sartoris, Gino Pollini and Giuseppe Terragni of whom letters and photographs are on show, and with Guido Fiorini whose drawings of a tensile structure skyscraper Le Corbusier included in his plan for Algiers are exhibited. Ample space is devoted to Le Corbusier’s work in the field of town planning and his ideas for the cite radieuse, including a signed dedication within a copy of the second volume of his Complete Works sent to Mussolini testifying to his attempts to win the commission for the plan for Pontinia, the third new town founded in the Lazio region.

The search for clients led him to contact major Italian companies such as FIAT and OIivetti, expressions of an expanding and extremely modern industrial sector. This documentation includes correspondence with Adriano Olivetti and photographs taken on the roof of the Lingotto in Turin aboard a Fiat Balilla Sport.

In the early 1940s Le Corbusier added sculpture to his existing interests in painting and architecture, theorising the necessity for a synthesis of the plastic arts.

Now enjoying international repute, Le Corbusier returned to Italy on a number of occasions; to Bergamo for the VII CIAM (1949), to Milan at the invitation of the Triennale for the conference De Divina Proportione (1951), to Venice for the International Conference of Artists and the CIAM summer school (1952), to Turin (1961), and to Florence where in 1963 the first major Italian exhibition of his work was staged in 1963.

The exhibition concludes with two extensive sections dealing with the architect’s professional commissions between 1962 and 1965; the Olivetti Electronic Calculation Centre in Rho and the new hospital in Venice, neither of which were built, in part due to Le Corbusier’s death in August 1965.

Significant testimony to the architectural poetic of the later years, these projects are documented through sketches, drawings, original models and films in which le Corbusier speaks about Venice and his deep admiration for the city ever since his first visit in the autumn of 1907.

Partner: Fondation Le Corbusier
Main sponsor: Cassina
With the contribution of: JTI
Sponsor: Invitalia
Technical lighting Sponsor: IGuzzini
MAXXI would like to thank: the Swiss Embassy, Prohelvetia, the Swiss Institute, Swiss Tourism, the French Embassy and the Fondazione Adriano Olivetti
MAXXI would also like to thank the French Academy for its collaboration


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