Controversy erupts in France over books depicting Le Corbusier, pioneer of the modern movement in architecture, as an out and out fascist who had an office in Vichy, seat of the Nazi puppet government in France
France’s best-known 20th century architect, Le Corbusier, was a “militant fascist” who was far more anti-Semitic and a fan of Hitler than previously thought, two new books reveal.
The unsettling disclosures about the links of one of the world’s most famous modern architects to France’s wartime collaborationist Vichy regime have been released just ahead of a major Paris exhibition of his work.
It has long been known that Le Corbusier, famed for his revolutionary concrete creations, including a housing project in Marseille called La Cité Radieuse, had some ties to France’s collaborationist regime under Field Marshal Philippe Pétain.
But the latest, far more damning, revelations have shocked admirers and threaten to cast a shadow over commemorations of the 50th anniversary of his death.
Paris’s Pompidou Centre, which is to open a three-month long exhibition dedicated to Le Corbusier on April 29th, faces allegations of totally failing to mention the controversy.
Xavier de Jarcy, a journalist who wrote about the find in his book “Le Corbusier, un fascisme francais” (Le Corbusier, a French fascism), told AFP: “I discovered he was simply an outright fascist.”
The architect “was active during 20 years in groups with a very clear ideology” but that “has been kept hidden”, confirmed another author, Francois Chaslin, who published Un Corbusier. […]