Beautiful Villa Savoye

AS A MONUMENT TO MODERNISM, THE BUILDING POSSESSES A POETRY AND SENSITIVITY FULL OF IDEALISM. THE CAREFUL COMPOSITION OF LIVING SPACE AND INTENTION TO HARNESS NATURAL LIGHT, NOT TO MENTION THE BUILDING’S ICONIC AESTHETIC, STILL DEFINE MODERN ARCHITECTURE.

villasavoye_landscapeThe Villa Savoye, built in 1929 in Poissy, a rural area outside Paris, was Le Corbusier’s answer to a French country house. Given relatively few constraints by the Savoye family, Le Corbusier designed a building to embody the architectural theory he had evolved in practice and in his book, Towards an Architecture 1923. He was inspired by both the classical forms of ancient Greek architecture and the modern technologies that were shaping the world such as automobiles, airplanes and ocean liners.

villasavoye_landscape2.jpgThis project was the last in a series of private homes known as the ‘white villas’ built by Le Corbusier and his cousin and partner Pierre Jeanneret, which introduced a new form of luxury in which space itself, and its capacity for leisure, were the valuable commodities.

Of these, The Villa Savoye perhaps best embodies Le Corbusier’s architectural manifesto, the five points of architecture. The first, pilotis – slender pillars which raise the building off the ground, opening up more space for gardens and cars, made possible the second, a façade free of its usual load bearing function. Walls were no longer supporting structures but ‘membranes.’ This allowed the unimpaired design of the third, an open plan interior, and the fourth, ribbon windows to flood the interior with maximum light and to illuminate it evenly. A sliding window system patented by Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret was intended to offer superior ventilation, as well as give access to the fifth, a flat roof which could serve as a terrace. A curved solarium crowns the structure, the brightest increment in the layered design. This symbiotic relationship of these five features gives some insight into what could otherwise be a somewhat alienating notion of Le Corbusier’s, the famous concept of a house as ‘a machine for living.’

villasavoye_landscape3-outdoor.jpgUnfortunately the Villa Savoye presented its residents with its own host of problems, despite its pioneering design. Each autumn, as the windows ushered in a warm vista of seasonal colour, the family would write repeatedly to Le Courbusier, begging him to make ‘habitable,’ what proved to be a damp and chilly building. They complained of ‘raining’ in the hall, on the ramp and in the bathroom. The loud drumming of rain on the bathroom skylight kept them awake at night, heat escaped through the long stretches of glazing and the heating system was both insufficient and a further cause of flooding.

villasavoye_stair.jpg villasavoye_portraitchair villasavoye_landscape4.jpgvillasavoye_portrait6-bath.jpgvillasavoye_portrait5-stair 2.jpg villasavoye_landscape4

Much of this was perhaps due to the fact that the technology involved was not fully developed at the time. As a monument to Modernism, the building possesses a poetry and sensitivity full of idealism. The careful composition of living space and intention to harness natural light, not to mention the building’s iconic aesthetic, still define modern architecture. Nonetheless, the discomforts they had suffered ultimately led the Savoye family to decide against restoring the property after the 2nd World War, when it was seized by German forces. About to be demolished by the local authorities to make way for a school, the building was rescued by architects and academics including Le Corbusier himself. Now a museum, restored closely to its original state, Villa Savoye is one of 17 of Le Corbusier’s buildings declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Credit: readcereal.com/

Beautiful Hermès Reuse – Atelier Petit H

petith_portrait1

In an unassuming street in Pantin, the north-eastern Parisian suburb that has become something of an industrial hub for the luxury fashion industry, you’ll find the petit h workshop. Hidden off a leafy courtyard, the open-plan, well-lit room is a laboratory of sorts that houses the exceptional métiers of Hermès under the one roof. The mission here is to transform discarded items from the Maison’s many ateliers, and craft treasures from the odds, ends and off-cuts with the help of a roster of artists and designers like Christian Astuguevielle, Parme Marin, and Isabelle Leloup.
Read the interview here via Cereal Magazine

petith_portrait2

petith_portrait4petith_portrait3PetitH_portrait5.jpgpetith_portrait6petith_portrait8PetitH_portrait9.jpgpetith_portrait10PetitH_portrait11.jpgpetith_portrait12Photography: Rich Stapleton
By: Alice Cavanagh

Beautiful Photography by Vivian Maier

Vivian Maier: Coming Out of the Shadows
Mary Poppins with a Camera

Recently I had the pleasure of viewing one of the most
fascinating and enjoyable films in recent memory.
John Maloof developed the film about the life and work
of Vivian Maier. Maier remains the most mysterious street
and documentary photographers of the 20th Century and
was completely unknown until the time of her death at
83 years old in 2009.
get-attachment-23_aspx Vivian-Maier_68_896-01_72dpi-636x640

Her work was first discovered in Chicago in 2007
wherein 3000+ prints, over 100,000 negatives,
and hundreds of undeveloped film were stored in
boxes hidden within several abandoned storage units
and ended up on the auction floor in separate lots only
to be rescued by John Maloof. Born in New York, Maier
spent much of her youth in France. Starting in the late
1940s, she shot an average of a roll of film a day.
She moved to Chicago in the mid-1950s, and spent the
next 40 years working as a nanny to support her unrelenting
passion for photography. There are so many wonderful
photographs in her collection and these are not even a
tiny fraction of her work.

1003 59-1060 Untitled, May 16, 1957 maier_016

In addition to her known street photography,
she had a prolific, relentless curiosity that worked
in a vast range of subjects and styles.
Maier’s photos reveal a unique ability to brilliantly
capture not only emotions but the issues of the
moment as depicted in protest scenes shot during
the social unrest of 1968. Her collection reflects
nine of Maier’s personal journeys from the pastures
of rural France to the streets of downtown Chicago,
Snapshots, America, Day, Maxwell, Beach, 1968,
Downtown, Walks, and Night.

maier1 Vivian-Maier_06 vivian-maier-8

Vivian’s photographs are a personal diary telling
her life story, capturing the essence and vibrancy
of her surroundings on a daily basis. She seemed to
stare deep into the soul of the 50s and 60s preserving
the everyday experience of the people she encountered.
The joy, heartbreak reality and curiosity she recorded
is what makes her work so compelling. Venturing outside
the comfortable homes and picturesque neighborhoods
of her employers, Maier shot many of her most iconic
photos while working for various Chicago families,
a job that allowed her the flexibility to travel both
domestically and abroad, as shown in her photographs
of New York, South Dakota, Florida, California, as well as
the rural pastures of Southern France.

med_vivian-maier-press-kit-4-jpg 1954, New York, NY o-FINDING-VIVIAN-MAIER-facebook

As clear and forthright as her images are, they only
go so far in revealing who she was and why she never
shared any of her work…but don’t fret if you are a
film enthusiast. A fascinating new documentary,
Finding Vivian Maier, is currently out in theaters
and is not to be missed. There is so much mystery
and work to admire and discover about this
gifted human being.

Photo Credits: http://www.vivianmaier.com/

Beautiful School

Atelier 208 designed Pajot’s School canteen, located
in the town of Pontault-Combault, France.  The
design of the building is the expression of its structure
and function. From a steel and concrete frame, the
envelope speaks through a child’s language and plays a
major role in the way children perceive the space.
The origami like roof folds and unfolds in order to
allow light to emphasizing imagination, creativity
and a certain ingenuity.

52d8a85ee8e44e45120000af_pajot-school-canteen-atelier-208_restauration_scolaire_-_pontault_combault_-_photo_02-530x263 52d8a8d3e8e44e45120000b4_pajot-school-canteen-atelier-208_restauration_scolaire_-_pontault_combault_-_photo_03-530x353  52d8a9f5e8e44efb240000b0_pajot-school-canteen-atelier-208_restauration_scolaire_-_pontault_combault_-_photo_13-530x35352d8aae5e8e44e45120000bb_pajot-school-canteen-atelier-208_plt_clt_sections-530x374

Beautiful Festival of Lights

I just added the Lyon Festival of Lights
to my bucket list of places I want visit.
The Festival of Lights in Lyon, France
(or Fête des Lumières) ignites a dazzling
light displays by artists from around the world.
By the end of it, between three and four million
visitors (I wish I was one of them) are expected
to have walked around the French city to see
the highly impressive light installations, which
this year include 80 works by 120 designers.
Impressive and beautiful.
swarm of red laterns video projection in a tunnel spring in winter Lotus blossoms floating on a lake jungle of strings lightstrings04 bed of roses Giant floating colored pencils faucet of light hovering water cans cans cans3

Beautiful Colorful Architecture

Paul Le Quernec’s cultural center in Mulhouse, France
is luscious. His use of bright colors and geometric shapes
are amazing. Love this building and vibrant colors.
I want to experience this place immediately.
paul-le-quernec-architect-cultural-center-in-mulhouse-designboom-04  paul-le-quernec-architect-cultural-center-in-mulhouse-designboom-03  paul-le-quernec-architect-cultural-center-in-mulhouse-designboom-01  paul-le-quernec-architect-cultural-center-in-mulhouse-designboom-02  paul-le-quernec-architect-cultural-center-in-mulhouse-designboom-07  paul-le-quernec-architect-cultural-center-in-mulhouse-designboom-06  paul-le-quernec-architect-cultural-center-in-mulhouse-designboom-08  g3  g4  g7  g10  g9