Journey to the East

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MIT Press, 2007 - Architecture - 269 pages

This is the legendary travel diary that the twenty-four-year-old Charles-ÉdouardJeanneret (Le Corbusier) kept during his formative journey through Southern, Central, and EasternEurope in 1911. In a flood of highly personal impressions and visual notations, it records his firstcontact with the vernacular architecture that would preoccupy him for the rest of his life and hisfirst sight of the monuments he most admired: the mosque complexes, the Acropolis, and theParthenon. Le Corbusier himself suppressed publication of this book during his lifetime; after hisdeath, the text was released as "an unprefaced last confession." Journey to the East canbe read as a bildungsroman by a young author who would go on to become one of the greatestarchitects of the twentieth century. It is very much a story of awakening and a voyage ofdiscoveries, recording a seven-month journey that took Le Corbusier from Berlin through Vienna,Budapest, Bucharest, Istanbul, Athos, Athens, Naples, and Rome, among other places. Le Corbusierconsidered this journey the most significant of his life; the compulsion he felt to record imagesand impressions established a practice he would continue for the rest of his career. For the nextfive decades, he would fill notebooks with ideas and sketches; he never stopped deriving inspirationfrom the memories of his first contact with the East, making this volume as much a historicaldocument as a personal confession and diary. Ivan Zaknic's [hacek over Z and acute accent over c]highly regarded translation was first published by The MIT Press in 1987 but has been unavailablefor many years.

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Journey to the East

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Le Corbusier was one of the greatest architects of the 20th century, if not the greatest in terms of influence and fecundity. This is the first book he ever wrote, never before published in English ... Read full review



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About the author (2007)

Swiss-born architect, urban planner, sculptor, painter, and writer Le Corbusier (1887-1956), born Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, was one of the most influential architects of the twentieth century and one of the leading figures of architectural modernism. Ivan Zaknic [haceks over Z and acute accent over c], editor and translator, is Professor of Architecture at Lehigh University and Visiting Fellow at Princeton University.

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