Book / Les immeubles de grande hauteur en France. Un héritage moderne 1945-1975

Les immeubles de grande hauteur en France. Un héritage moderne 1945-1975
By Richard Klein, Hermann Publishing, 2020

Docomomo International is pleased to announce the release of the docomomo France bulletin dedicated to high-rise buildings in France.

Publication director: Richard Klein
Editor in chief: Riccardo Forte
Editorial secretary: Milena Crespo
Editorial coordination: Léo Noyer-Duplaix and Marjorie Occelli

The authors:
Caroline Bauer, Silvia Berselli, Catherine Blain, Gauthier Bolle, Bénédicte Chaljub, Audrey Courtebaisse,
Milena Crespo, Amandine Diener, Philippe Dufieux, Laurent Duport, Riccardo Forte, julie Gimbal, Richard Klein, Léo Noyer-Duplaix, Hugo Massire, Noëmie Maurin-Gaisne,  Gauthier Vanovershelde,  Benjamin Walther.

“The reader, contemporary spectator of the resurgence of the urban tower, will certainly find a critical subject of choice in the case studies developed in this new publication of docomomo France. The genesis, the influence of the models, the singularities, the reception and the future, more simply history, these objects that punctuate the territory and concentrate the hopes as the uncertainties of modernity. The stories of known and lesser-known towers told in this publication shed light on the relationships between the context, local circumstances, material and cultural situations of tall buildings. The tower as an economic and symbolic instrument of urban development quickly becomes the target of a form of critical violence. The weakness of the arguments then reveals the ideological nature of the debates and probably explains, more than the other reasons given, the destruction and customization of all kinds, the most common ingredients of which are greening and artificial lighting. If the integrity of the inhabited belfry of the Perret tower in Amiens could not be preserved, great discoveries are still possible between the precision and thoroughness of the European of Thionville, the sculptural plasticity of the Grenoble towers, the singularity plastic of that of La Duchère or the purism retained of the Viollet tower in Angers. Other aspects open the field of reflection: The towers of a region, those of a city, the figure of the program of an administration choosing the archetype of the tower and its base as a representation of its social dimension, the figure of the architect of the great height, that of the architect of the series, typological manipulations and morphological inventions. Tall buildings clearly need consideration. Perhaps they can still pass on to future generations some of the techniques, atmospheres and aesthetics of the second half of the 20th century. This part of the legacy of the Modern Movement also ensures the coherence of the urban complexes to which they confer the dignity of elevation.”

Richard Klein,
Chair of docomomo France

To order this book, please visit: website.