Architect, painter and urbanist, Le Corbusier was influential in shaping modern culture, design and fashion. His architectural style is marked by clarity, graceful geometric forms and heavy, strong materials such as reinforced steel and concrete; a direction also noticed in his paintings, where he opted for primary hues and bright strokes of color.
Esthetically speaking, Le Corbusier has influenced fashion —but his own relationship with style was minimal in nature. Peculiarly enough, later in life, he would directly enter the fashion world by marrying model and dressmaker Yvonne Gallis.
Although he dressed like a bureaucrat, in dark suits, bow ties and round horn-rimmed glasses, he was really an artist in his sartorial choices. A man constrained by the lines and angles of his modernist architecture, Le Corbusier rarely deviated from his basic dressing code. It was the way in which he composed his look that was so extraordinary.
From top to bottom: his taunt bow ties were embellished with a variety of neat patterns, that often required a closer inspection to be identified. Made of fine fabric textures, his lineup of broad double breasted suits dressed comfy around his shoulders and were always finished with a prominent white pocket square. With smooth precision we go further to his accessories arsenal. His pipe, dramatic and rigid, almost shaped like a horizontal ‘L’ was the add-on that spiced up his dashing persona. And of course there were the glasses. His spectacles, with thick lenses and bold, graphic frames were the center of interest of his alluring appearance. A signature nearly bordering on self- caricature, Le Corbusier’s circular horn-rimmed glasses marked the kind of style he owned with superior confidence and passion.
To sum it all up, the great Le Corbusier, one of the grand masters of modernism and a pioneer of contemporary urban planning, also proved to be quite the style icon, and one of the first in his work field, at that. Since him, many celebrity architects realized the importance of a personalized look. Like Le Corbusier, architects today are often remarkably loyal to their chosen eyewear style that often suggests a balance between social geekiness and stiff conservatism.
Just as one of the fifty-eight buildings he designed throughout his five-plus decade career as an architect, Le Corbusier’s style was a careful construction, keeping together a rigorous set of elements in an altogether unique manner.As a matter of fact, we couldn’t agree more with Le Corbusier, that choosing the right pair of glasses isn't only about comfort and usability, but also about looking good. Because glasses reflect personality, we suggest you take a few minutes and browse through our gallery of designer optical frames here.
photos: Getty Images, LIFE magazine