Le Corbusier: Architectural Influences and Indian Impact

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By AffectionateImpressionism



3 Questions

What are the 'Five Points of Architecture' according to Le Corbusier?

What was Le Corbusier's concept for urban planning, and what were some of his urban planning projects?

In what ways did Le Corbusier influence Indian architecture after independence?


Title: Le Corbusier: From Modern Architecture to Indian Independence Influences


Le Corbusier, born Charles-Édouard Jeanneret in Switzerland in 1887, went on to become one of the most influential architects of the 20th century. As a prominent figure in modern architecture, brutalism, architectural theory, and urban planning, Le Corbusier's impact can be felt across the globe and particularly in India after independence. In this article, we will delve into Le Corbusier's contributions to these subtopics, examining his theories, designs, and influence on Indian architecture.

Modern Architecture

Le Corbusier was a pioneer of modern architecture, which came into being during the early 20th century. His creations, characterized by an emphasis on functionality and a rejection of historical stylistic references, contributed to the development of a distinct International Style. This revolutionary approach to design focused on simplicity, clarity, and an open floor plan that allowed natural light and ventilation.


One of Le Corbusier's architectural styles, brutalism, which emerged in the 1950s and 1960s, is characterized by its unadorned, robust, and often imposing structures. Influenced by the French word "béton brut," meaning raw concrete, brutalist buildings are known for their use of exposed, rough concrete surfaces. Le Corbusier's brutalist works include the Unité d'Habitation in Marseille, France, and the Chandigarh Capitol Complex in India.

Architectural Theory

Le Corbusier's architectural theories, known as the "Five Points of Architecture," were derived from his earlier work "Towards an Architecture." The five points are:

  1. Pilotis: Supporting the building on pilotis (columns or stilts) allows for increased open space, natural light, and ventilation.
  2. Free Facade: Emphasizing the use of free facades and minimizing ornamentation.
  3. Open Floor Plan: Creating an open floor plan that facilitates natural light and ventilation.
  4. Roof Garden: Incorporating green spaces on rooftops and terrains.
  5. Horizontal Window: Maximizing natural light by placing windows at the same height across the facade.

Urban Planning

Le Corbusier's urban planning theories were central to his architectural approach. He was a proponent of the "Radiant City" concept, which aimed to create an efficient, functional, and livable city by promoting urban density and open spaces. Some of his urban planning projects include the Plan Voisin in Paris, France, and the Chandigarh Master Plan in India.

Influence on Indian Architecture After Independence

Le Corbusier's influence on Indian architecture after independence can be observed in several ways. In 1951, the Indian government invited Le Corbusier to design the new capital city of Chandigarh, a city that would serve as the state capital of Punjab and Haryana. Le Corbusier's designs for Chandigarh, which included the Capitol Complex, Government Museum, and High Court, were influenced by his modern architectural theories and urban planning concepts.

Le Corbusier's influence can be seen in other Indian buildings as well, including the Kochi Biennale Pavilion, the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, and the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad. These structures reflect the blending of Indian cultural and architectural heritage with the functional and innovative approaches of modern architecture.


Le Corbusier's contributions to modern architecture, brutalism, architectural theory, urban planning, and Indian architecture after independence have left a lasting mark on the world. As one of the most influential architects of the 20th century, Le Corbusier's innovative designs, groundbreaking theories, and impactful contributions to architecture have shaped the built environment in ways that continue to influence our cities and towns today.


Explore the influential contributions of Le Corbusier to modern architecture, brutalism, architectural theory, urban planning, and his impact on Indian architecture after independence. Delve into his designs, theories, and lasting influences on the built environment.

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