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Le Corbusier’s Exhibition Pavilion: The Heterogeneous Character of his Modernism Between Representation and Functionalism [ITU J Faculty Arch]
ITU J Faculty Arch. 2017; 14(3): 181-194 | DOI: 10.5505/itujfa.2017.83702  

Le Corbusier’s Exhibition Pavilion: The Heterogeneous Character of his Modernism Between Representation and Functionalism

Efe Duyan
Mi̇mar Si̇nan Fıne Arts Unıversıty

This study investigates the exhibition spaces designed by Le Corbusier and their common features by describing and classifying them as the existing literature does not offer a full genealogy of his exhibition spaces with the intent to identify connections between them. The relationship of architecture and the exhibited object is the key concept in understanding of the exhibition spaces, including the pavilions, galleries, and some of his museums, which can be described in three main groups: in the first group, architecture becomes the representation itself as a nomadic gesture. In the second group, the structure separates itself from the materiality of the exhibition to create a dual existence and in the third group, the structure and the exhibition obtain singular yet connected and well-defined identities. The reading of exhibition spaces indicates a career-long search by Corbusier for the identity of architecture as a representation of the exhibition itself, which explains the emergence of a template in the late years. The development of exhibition spaces from 1924 to 1962, evidences the existence of a clear leitmotif, which connects Corbusier's pavilions one another and represents his conception of exhibition space. All temporary exhibition spaces have a very specific shape, which can be described as a reverse double triangular at the roof or on the facade. The relation of this formal leitmotif as the common feature and the understanding of exhibition space reveals an example of Corbusier's rationalism, which contains elements of symbolism, formalism and functionalism as a synthesis.

Keywords: Le Corbusier, Exhibition Pavilions, rationalism, symbolism, leitmotiv


Efe Duyan. Le Corbusier’s Exhibition Pavilion: The Heterogeneous Character of his Modernism Between Representation and Functionalism. ITU J Faculty Arch. 2017; 14(3): 181-194

Corresponding Author: Efe Duyan, Türkiye


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