Le Corbusier, Le poème de l’angle droit
Between 1947 and 1953, Le Corbusier (1887–1965) produced a suite of 19 lithographs and illustrated poems that are now regarded as the most complete statement of his worldview. The lithographs and texts of Le poème de l’angle droit are arranged in seven “zones” lettered A–G, and are assigned a thematic title and a color (e.g. A is Environment [green]; B is Mind; C is Flesh [brown]; etc). These titles, and their color codings, were in part inspired by Le Corbusier’s study of alchemy, and each chapter in the book contains a subset of poetical meditations on alchemical theories of tensions between elements, colors and genders, and the relationship between spiritual evolution and architecture. Le poème de l’angle droit was published in 1955. This elegantly jacketed, clothbound facsimile publication presents a classic of architectural literature in a handsome, affordable edition for the first time. Le Corbusier’s handwritten text remains in its original French throughout; an English translation of the text is included as an appendix.