Le Corbusier

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Le Corbusier

Charles-douard Jeanneret-Gris, aka "Le Corbusier," was born on Oct. 6, 1887 in Switzerland. He served as a Swiss-French architect, designer and painter during a career that spanned five decades.

Jeanneret studied at the La-Chaux-de-Fonds Art School under Charles L'Eplattenier. In 1908, he traveled to Paris and worked in the office of Auguste Perret, a French pioneer of reinforced concrete. And between October 1910 and March 1911, he worked near Berlin for architect Peter Behrens.

During World War I, Jeanneret taught at La-Chaux-de-Fonds. At this time, he worked on theoretical architectural studies using modern techniques.

Jeanneret worked on the Dom-Ino House in the mid 1910s. This model featured open floor plan that included concrete slabs supported by a small number of thin reinforced concrete columns around the edges, with a stairway providing access to each level on one side of the floor plan. The design also became a staple for his creations over the next decade.

In 1920, Jeanneret adopted the pseudonym Le Corbusier, a reflection of his belief that anyone could reinvent themselves. In 1922 he presented his design for a "Contemporary City" for 3 million inhabitants. The Plan included 60-story cruciform skyscrapers, along with many steel-framed office buildings encased in huge curtain walls of glass.

Le Corbusier began experimenting with furniture design in 1928. He and architect Charlotte Perriand defined three types of furniture: type-needs, type-furniture and human-limb objects.

After World War II, Le Corbusier attempted to realize his urban planning schemes on a small scale by constructing a series of "unites." And over the remainder of his lifetime, he designed numerous administration buildings, including a courthouse, parliament building, and a university.

On Aug. 27, 1965, Le Corbusier went for a swim in the Mediterranean Sea. He was found several hours later and pronounced dead.

Le Corbusier's works impacted both the cultural and political world.