My mother always dreamt of a country house with red tiles and a garden. For various reasons, which likely does not interest the reader, this house was built 30 years ago and it was quite different. The modernist architect responsible for the design and construction, a very sympathetic man nonetheless, I am now certain has misread and misconceived the theories of Le Corbusier. Using basically concrete and making an effort to stick to the five basic elements (pilotis, terrace, horizontal openings, open plan and plain facade) he erroneously adopted and reproduced eventually just the formal aspect of Le Corbusier’s ideas while overlooking the most important one, the Modulor; that is to say, the relationship of the construction to the human body. Can you imagine how painstaking it is to unsuccessfully search in your own house for the golden mean?
CORBU allowed me to make a correction. The “Machine à Habiter” need s humanization and a robust service. We are the space we live in and this undertaking progressively began to acquire the characteristics of a spatialized psychoanalytical experience. The difference between Le Corbusier and the modernist architect who made my mother’s house is the difference between the ideal and the actual conditions in which we live. Seeing my house, time and again, I come to realize that I like more and more this ‘misreading’ of Le Corbusier because it is a part of my life.
Excerpt from “CORBU,” in VERS L. C. CONTRE, pp. 258-263.