Friday, February 10, 2017

Modernist Architecture in the 16eme Arrondissement, Paris

I found a self-guided walking tour of modernist architecture in the 16eme arrondissement in Paris and decided to give it a try. It was great fun to take the time to look at the buildings rather than simply heading straight for a destination. (There are some lovely bakeries, chocolate, and cheese stores as well!)

The avant-garde architects of the early 20th century were reacting against neo-Renaissance architecture, such as the building designed by J. Boussard and shown in the following photographs. It makes me laugh, but I can see how they were ready for something cleaner and simpler.

For example, here are two of six Cubist houses designed by Robert Mallet-Stevens in a small, cobble-stoned cul de sac.

Some of the buildings have wonderful tile finishes.

Auguste Perret designed a 1904 building around a concrete frame, eliminating the need for internal load-bearing walls and creating light, airy spaces that are typical of Modernism. Tilework with a delicate leaf motif adds the perfect finishing touch.

Hector Guimard is well-known for designing Metro signs and entrances. His own home has all sorts of Art Nouveau touches.

I particularly enjoyed the ironwork on Castel BĂ©ranger.

A few final photographs of this pretty area of Paris.

And of course, the main reason tourists venture into this part of town is for the iconic view of the Tour Eiffel from the Palais de Chaillot.

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