In the decade 1949-59 French architecture still seems to be dominated by the overwhelming personality of Le Corbusier. There was no lack of architects from younger generations, and among the best is Pierre Vago, who was able to develop and thematically enrich architectural rationalism, with buildings built mainly in overseas territories; but among the most salient, or at least the most discussed, events that occurred in France are the construction of the unité d’habitation, built by Le Corbusier in Marseille between 1945 and 1954 and the construction of the chapel of Notre Dame du Haut a Ronchamp performed by Le Corbusier himself between 1950 and 1953.
According to Ehealthfacts, these are two apparently different constructions, and not only for the diversity of thematic, but which nevertheless reveal the fantastic unity of Le Corbusier’s style. The unité d ‘ habitation, which was subsequently repeated, slightly modified, in Berlin, seems to perfectly realize what was the basic idea of Le Corbusier’s poetics: a rationalism made to measure for man, not so much as an isolated individual, but as a member of a social complexity that has common as well as particular needs. Notre Dame du Haut is a less rigid architecture, less committed to a module, and therefore subtly varied in the play of planes and surfaces, more pictorial than any other previous architecture by the master. Furthermore, it should not be forgotten that Le Corbusier, in a completely coherent way with his poetics, has never forgotten the value of urban planning, as evidenced by the mass of buildings that he has been carrying out for several years in India for the new city of Chandigarh. (see, in this App.).
Other interesting experiments were not lacking in French architecture, such as the use of what has been defined architectural polychromy in buildings where there was a collaboration between architects and painters. For the Saint-Lo hospital, due to the architects Nelson, Gilbert, Mersier, Sebillotte, the collaboration of Fernand Léger was requested for the chromatic determination of the building.
An example of close collaboration between the various arts is represented by the Unesco complex, designed and built in Paris by architects Marcel Breuer, Bernard Zehrfuss and Pier Luigi Nervi, under the supervision of an international committee composed of Le Corbusier, Walter Gropius, Lucio Costa, Sven Markelius and Ernesto N. Rogers. Sculptures, paintings and mosaics by some of the greatest artists of the whole world make up the decoration of this architectural complex, from Picasso to Arp, Miró, Calder, Afro, Tamayo, etc.
Another noteworthy complex, and which has recently been completed, is the Center des Industries et des Techniques, built at the Rond-point de la Defense, in Puteaux, due to the collaboration of architects and engineers including Camelot, de Mailly, Zehrfuss and Pier Luigi Nervi.