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Casablanca Chandigarh Exhibit in Montreal

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The visionary French architects gallivanting the Third World of the 1950’s in their quest to seed Western Modernism, have left legacies whose relevance comes of age in one of our most contemporary concerns: how to be urban in a good way.
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  “These were almost anthropological studies,” says Tom Avermaete of Casablanca, “Écochard was in fact a trained archeologist – his interest in uncovering the authentic state of things, as opposed to an idealized or derogatory notion of them was so avant-garde that he was later appointed director of urban planning for the entire country. Planning that arises from indigenous conditions is dynamic by nature, it will inevitably be appropriate over time”.  Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson
    “These were almost anthropological studies,” says Tom Avermaete of Casablanca, “Écochard was in fact a trained archeologist – his interest in uncovering the authentic state of things, as opposed to an idealized or derogatory notion of them was so avant-garde that he was later appointed director of urban planning for the entire country. Planning that arises from indigenous conditions is dynamic by nature, it will inevitably be appropriate over time”.

    Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson

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  Michel Écochard on his motorcycle, Casablanca, 1949.  Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson
    Michel Écochard on his motorcycle, Casablanca, 1949.

    Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson

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  The maquettes of Casablanca illustrate how the cell grid reproduced the courthouse model, which echoed tradition but allowed for evolution – both horizontal, and vertical. They were also innovative in their creation of ‘centralities’, a closely-knit collection of shops, mosques, schools and homes that integrated life by good design.  Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson
    The maquettes of Casablanca illustrate how the cell grid reproduced the courthouse model, which echoed tradition but allowed for evolution – both horizontal, and vertical. They were also innovative in their creation of ‘centralities’, a closely-knit collection of shops, mosques, schools and homes that integrated life by good design.

    Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson

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  “In Chandigarh, Le Corbusier and Jeanneret re-cast the Mughal Garden as a living space around which they designed an urban structure along the river, a central backbone running through what Le Corbusier called La Vallée de Loisir, The Valley of Leisure. They were interested in circulation as a way to reflect the care of the body and spirit. It was totally visionary,” says Maristella Casciato.  Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson
    “In Chandigarh, Le Corbusier and Jeanneret re-cast the Mughal Garden as a living space around which they designed an urban structure along the river, a central backbone running through what Le Corbusier called La Vallée de Loisir, The Valley of Leisure. They were interested in circulation as a way to reflect the care of the body and spirit. It was totally visionary,” says Maristella Casciato.

    Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson

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  “The maquettes of Chandigarh demonstrate the indoor/outdoor lifestyle of Indians, and incorporated roof design to allow for expansion. In the hot months, Indians like to sleep outdoors – so these roofs became an extended room,” explains Casciato.  Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson
    “The maquettes of Chandigarh demonstrate the indoor/outdoor lifestyle of Indians, and incorporated roof design to allow for expansion. In the hot months, Indians like to sleep outdoors – so these roofs became an extended room,” explains Casciato.

    Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson

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  (UN room) The experiment of responding to local environments rather than colonizing them has created a unique legacy, where city planners, designers and architects can turn to non-Western urban models, as inspirations in the West. Cities where population growth and a kaleidoscope of survival challenges really test design, serve as examples to now re-apply to Western infrastructure.  Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson
    (UN room) The experiment of responding to local environments rather than colonizing them has created a unique legacy, where city planners, designers and architects can turn to non-Western urban models, as inspirations in the West. Cities where population growth and a kaleidoscope of survival challenges really test design, serve as examples to now re-apply to Western infrastructure.

    Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson

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  Chandigarh survey close-up: measuring the emotional and spiritual, as well as rational, reactions of the local population.  Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson
    Chandigarh survey close-up: measuring the emotional and spiritual, as well as rational, reactions of the local population.

    Courtesy of: Tim Georgeson

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  Two photographers, Yto Barrada and Takashi Homma, were engaged to visit today’s Casablanca and Chandigarh for contemporary visuals that interweave the exhibition and accompanying publication. Their photographs of everyday life demonstrate how the Modernist city in each case has been appropriated completely, and evolved, along with its inhabitants, into a bustling metropolis allowing change, adaptation and transformation within urbanities that * Photos 8 and 9: Two photographers, Yto Barrada and Takashi Homma, were engaged to visit today’s Casablanca and Chandigarh for contemporary visuals that interweave the exhibition and accompanying publication. Their photographs of everyday life demonstrate how the Modernist city in each case has been appropriated completely, and evolved, along with its inhabitants, into a bustling metropolis allowing change, adaptation and transformation within urbanities that locals call ‘flexible and beautiful to live in’.  Courtesy of: Image Courtesy of CCA
    Two photographers, Yto Barrada and Takashi Homma, were engaged to visit today’s Casablanca and Chandigarh for contemporary visuals that interweave the exhibition and accompanying publication. Their photographs of everyday life demonstrate how the Modernist city in each case has been appropriated completely, and evolved, along with its inhabitants, into a bustling metropolis allowing change, adaptation and transformation within urbanities that * Photos 8 and 9: Two photographers, Yto Barrada and Takashi Homma, were engaged to visit today’s Casablanca and Chandigarh for contemporary visuals that interweave the exhibition and accompanying publication. Their photographs of everyday life demonstrate how the Modernist city in each case has been appropriated completely, and evolved, along with its inhabitants, into a bustling metropolis allowing change, adaptation and transformation within urbanities that locals call ‘flexible and beautiful to live in’.

    Courtesy of: Image Courtesy of CCA

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