Le Corbusier's Urban Planning, 1942-1946: The ASCORAL Studies and the Plan for Saint-Dié
4 West Burton Place
Chicago, Illinois 60610
This project examines Le Corbusier's ideas about urban planning in the 1940s, especially his innovative project for the reconstruction of Saint-Dié. The research includes an oral history about this subject with Roger Aujame, who worked closely with Le Corbusier on his urban proposals during that decade. Aujame was a major participant in Le Corbusier's ASCORAL studies of the early 1940s and a coauthor of Les Trois Etablissements humains; he was also involved in the design of Saint-Dié and of the Unité block for Marseilles.
Roger Aujame has held a long and rich architectural practice since 1942, when he began working for Le Corbusier, following his studies at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris. During World War II, he was a member of the ASCORAL (Assemblée de constructeurs pour une rénovation architecturale) group and coauthored (with Le Corbusier and others) the book Les Trois Etablissements humains, published in 1946. In Le Corbusier's atelier, he worked on studies for the Usine Verte, the urban plan of Saint-Dié, the Unité d'Habitation in Marseilles, the Maison Currutchet, and the Modulor. In 1944, he became a member of the avant-garde design group Union des Artistes Modernes, and organized with André Hermant the group's first retrospective exhibition at the Sorbonne in 1947. He was also an active member of the Congrès Internationale d'Architecture Moderne (CIAM), participating in the meetings at Bergamo (1949), Aix en Provence (1953), and Dubrovnik (1956); at this last meeting, he presented a design for collective housing with "modifiable" units. After leaving Le Corbusier's atelier in 1950, Aujame was involved with the construction of the United Nations complex (on the design of which he had participated earlier), and then in 1952, he founded (with his wife Edith Schreiber Aujame) ATIC, which realized (along with Jean Prouvé's atelier) 200 units of housing in Argenteuil for the Abbé Pierre. During the 1960s, he worked for the United Nations, assisting with urban planning schemes, including developing master plans for Kabul and regional capitals of Afghanistan. Beginning in 1967, he also provided technical assistance to UNESCO for educational buildings. In 1969, he taught as a guest critic at the Graduate School of Design at Harvard. He has been active member of the Foundation Le Corbusier since the mid 1970s and served as Secretary General of the organization from 1982 to 1988. Most recently, he designed and helped supervise a new children's hospital built in Kabul, as well as helped to supervise the construction of Le Corbusier's church at Firminy.
Mary McLeod is a professor of architecture at Columbia University, where she teaches architectural history and theory, and occasionally studio. She has also taught at Harvard University, the University of Kentucky, the University of Miami, and the Institute for Architecture and Urban Studies. She received her BA, MArch, and PhD from Princeton University. Her research and publications have focused on the history of the modern movement and on contemporary architecture theory, examining issues concerning the connections between architecture and ideology. She is coeditor of Architecture, Criticism, Ideology and Architecture Reproduction, and is editor and contributor to the book Charlotte Perriand: An Art of Living (Abrams, 2003). Her articles have appeared in Assemblage, Oppositions, Art Journal, AA Files, JSAH, Casabella, and Lotus, as well as anthologies such as The Sex of Architecture, Architecture in Fashion, Architecture of the Everyday, Architecture and Feminism, The Pragmatist Imagination, The State of Architecture, and Fragments: Architecture and the Unfinished. She currently serves as a board member for the Buell Foundation for the Study of American Architecture, and has previously served on the boards of the Society of Architectural Historians and the Architectural League of New York. She initiated and helped curate the exhibition Charlotte Perriand: Interior Equipment, held at the Urban Center in New York.
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