Architecture Publications

Campus Units

Architecture

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2003

Abstract

Louis Soutter, Le Corbusier’s cousin, was an accomplished violinist who, at the end of his life, was committed to a Swiss asylum. Soutter loved to draw. His lewd and elongated human figures flow together as if fluid, decoratively extending from top to bottom and edge to edge of whatever surface Soutter covered. When Le Corbusier gave Soutter copies of his renowned books, Soutter promptly drew over the book’s illustrations. His drawings did not obliterate the visual text, but commented on it. An intriguing dialectic resulted.

In a 1936 Minotaure article, Le Corbusier sympathetically described Soutter as a spontaneous artist. After World War II, Le Corbusier himself practiced ‘drawing over’. The highly ambiguous visual dialogue that results from the ‘spill’ of emotive scribbling across pre-established imagery is unique in the oeuvre of Le Corbusier and is the subject of this article.

Comments

A Spanish translation of this paper was published in RA, Revista de Arquitectura. 6 (2004).

Copyright Owner

Daniel Naegele

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

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