Sunday, April 25, 2010

LeCorbusier's Firminy Site

Prelude: here is Guthrie proudly holding up his "self-portrait" assignment, due tomorrow, the kids' first day back to school after 2 weeks of spring vacation. "We" did a collage and he wrote about himself: "My name is Guthrie. I am 7 years old. I love animals and my mommy, daddy and Harper. I want to end war and be a peacemaker. I want to be an inventor. My dad is an epidemiologist (a scientist) and my mom is an artist. That's why I want to be a creative inventor. I went to Switzerland and got my second pocketknife. I play the piano and do Tae Kwon Do.....The End."

Today we drove an hour to Ferminy-Vert to see Le Corbusier's last project before he died, a model community with a stadium where people were throwing javelins, housing complexes, public swimming pool and a spectacular church. My sister Madeleine and I visited the remarkable one at Ronchamp over 10 years ago and this one is its equal. Ferminy was once a mining town and you can still feel the historical labor force there. Here is the website for the Ferminy LeCorbusier experience:

And here are a bunch of photographs from my new Nikon D300s, using my new euro=MacBook Pro to uplaod them - enjoy! Here is my super family on the walkway out of the "Cultural Building" where we had to buy tickets to the church, towards the stadium:

Arriving at the Church, eglise St. Pierre....
Corbusier's housing complex:

The Cultural Building:
Corbusier bench
Housing complex seen through the church's foundation:
The first photograph taken upon walking into this futuristic and spectacular church interior and looking straight up. We all gasped.
One of the skylights with part of the Orion constellation of lights seen to the right. Orion shines above the altar:

Even the pews glowed....I channeled Wolfgang Laib, James Turrell and Paul Virilio's bunker photographs...
The red and yellow and green and blue glowing windows are simply glowing because they are painted prinary colors and the incoming lights illuminates and reflects off the colors. It is quite magical. The kids thought they were colorful because they were stained glass.

Loving Modernism and wishing Robert Blanchon were still alive to be there with me. They did not have candles to light inside the church so I hummed Barry White in his honor instead.
The film viewing room in the church's museum basement:
A view of the church from the piscine, public swimming pool that was closed when we went over to look at it = c'est dommage.
a perfect harmony...
Harper in the church.

Here is a full view of the constellation of Orion lights that glow above the altar. They are glass tubes that penetrate the thick cement....
Self-portrait in the bathroom, waiting for Harper....
Corbu kids =

An archival photograph of Corbusier with some priests discussing construction and design plans -
Exterior detail of Corbu's apartment building reflected in the church window =

My new stockings and garter belt at our little picnic of ham and tuna sandwiches on a curb beneath a glorious pink tree -
Harper and her popsicle in front of this crazy image of a woman with square lips that we see all over town =
The glorious pink tree we sat under for lunch -
A circle in the road at Corbusier's church -

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