Inside Iconic Houses Tours are back! Isokon Building 18 November

Inside Iconic Houses - Live Online Tour Program

Pioneers of the Dutch Modern House

Portraits of the Architect - Interview with Gennaro Postiglione

Test Labs for New Ideas - Interview with Natascha Drabbe

New Chairman Architect Nanne de Ru on The Perfect Platform

Health and Home - Interview with Beatriz Colomina

A Life Less Ordinary – Interview with Valentijn Carbo

Invisible Women - Interview with Alice T. Friedman

Winy Maas on the Green Dip

Anita Blom on Experimental Housing of the 1970s

Women’s Worlds - Interview with Natalie Dubois

The Culture of Living - Interview with Robert von der Nahmer

Hetty Berens: A Fresh Take on Modernism

Niek Smit on Supporting Modern Heritage

Alice Roegholt on Amsterdam’s Working-Class Palaces

July is Iconic Houses Month

Save Maison Zilveli - Sign the Petition!

How a Building Tells a Story - Recorded Event

Toolkit for Owners of a Modern House

13 Aalto Sites Nominated for UNESCO World Heritage

Villa Beer At Risk - Sign the Petition!

Business Cards of Stone, Timber and Concrete in the Brussels Region 1830-1970

Exhibiting & Visiting Modernist Monuments

Fostering Well-Researched Responsible Design


Enjoy a virtual visit to the California House and a Q&A with architect Peter Gluck

Exhibition 'Modernism and Refuge'

A Hidden Gem of Postmodernism

New Centre for Historic Houses of India

An Online Chronicle of the Douglas House

SPECIAL – Northern (High)Lights!

SPECIAL - Casas Icónicas en España!

SPECIAL - Vacances en France!

SPECIAL – Iconic Dreams - Sleep in an Iconic House!

SPECIAL – Dutch Delights!

SPECIAL – German Greats!

Villa Henny, geometric style icon in The Netherlands

A Mendini temple in Amsterdam

IH-lectures USA & Canada Feb 2020 on Melnikov House

An Afternoon with the Glucks

Danish Moderns – Looking Back at Our Mini-Seminar

Venturo house complements Exhibition Centre WeeGee’s offering

Lecture report: Remembering Richard Neutra

Hôtel Mezzara and the Guimard Museum project

We welcome 13 new members!

BREAKING NEWS: 8 Wright Sites Inscribed on Unesco World Heritage List!

LECTURE 29 August - Raymond Neutra: My Father and Frank Lloyd Wright

Iconic Reads

SPECIAL – Iconic Artist Residencies

Our Badge of Honour

SPECIAL – Women & Iconic Houses

SPECIAL – Iconic Housing

Iconic Houses End Year Message

City-ordered rebuild of landmark house stirs debate: Appropriate or overreach?

Kohlberg House Restoration in Progress

Planned Demolition of Rietveld Homes in Reeuwijk

Renovation Gili House in Crisis

An Iconic Saga

Restoring Eileen Gray’s Villa E-1027 and Clarifying the Controversies

Modernism on the East Coast

Iconic Houses in Latin America

House Tours May 2018 

Expert Meetings

Terence Riley -KEYNOTE SPEAKER- on Philip Johnson

New era for Villa E-1027 and Cap Moderne

Jorge Liernur -KEYNOTE SPEAKER- on Latin American Modernism(s)

Restoring the past: The Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo Home Studio

Behind the Scenes: Hendrick de Keyser Association

Latin America Special – Focus on Mexico

De Stijl in Drachten

Preserving the Nancarrow House-Studio

Meet the Friends - Nanne de Ru

Latin America Special – Focus on Brazil

Jan de Jong’s House is Latest Hendrick de Keyser Acquisition

Stay in a Belgian Modernist Masterpiece

In Berlin’s Modernist Network

Rietveld-Schröder House Celebrates De Stijl Anniversary

Meet Our New Foundation Board Members

Virtual Tour of a Papaverhof Home in 3D

Getty Grant for Villa E-1027

Iconic Dacha

11 Le Corbusier Homes now on Unesco World Heritage List

At home with Le Corbusier

Wright Plus 2016 Walk

Speaking Volumes: Building the Iconic Houses Library

Follow us!

Documentary La Ricarda

Rent a house designed by Gerrit Rietveld

Barragán House on Screen

Gesamtkunstwerk – An Icon on the Move

Triennale der Moderne 27 September - 13 October 2013

Prestigious Art Nouveau mansions in Brussels open

September 14 + 15: Heritage Days in Paris

June's New Arrivals: Museum Apartments

Iconic Houses is now on Twitter and Facebook

Corbu’s Cabanon: Reconstruction and Lecture

Projekt Mies In Krefeld: Life-sized model of the Krefeld Clubhouse

New arrivals: Spain special

MAMO: Le Corbu’s ‘Park in the Sky’ open 12 June

Annual Wright Architectural Housewalk: 18 May

Frank Lloyd Wright Homes on Screen

Message from the Editor

Neutra’s House on Screen

Melnikov House on Screen

Iconic Houses in the media

Message from the Editor

Eileen Gray House on Screen

Copy Culture

At Home in the 20th Century

New 20th century Iconic Houses website launches

23 March 2013

Michel Richard, Fondation Le Corbusier

Michel Richard is the Director of the Le Corbusier Foundation in Paris. Le Corbusier himself set up the Foundation, with the mission of ensuring the conservation of his output in architecture and the visual arts.

Tell us a bit about yourself
I originally studied British and American literature and drama, subsequently working for 25 years in the French Ministry of Culture and associated bodies: the Centre National des Lettres, Bibliothèque Nationale and the Photography Agency of the Réunion des Musées Nationaux.

What makes a house iconic for you?
Designing a house is a merging of art and life in which the architect demonstrates all his intelligence. At the same time, it is a small-scale commission where the smallest error takes on glaring proportions. My preferred domestic environments are those strongly marked by their owners' personalities, houses that are modest and yet colourful, where one immediately feels at home. My bugbears are arrogance, gratuity or vacuity. A house is also a place, set within an urban or natural environment, and its relationship to the site, the way it snuggles into it or displays itself, is fundamental.

What's your favourite house?
I have always preferred houses built close to water, but this is also among the most difficult situations to work with. For these reasons, I hesitated between Hauteville House, Victor Hugo's home in Guernsey and Bruno Taut's Villa Hyuga in Atami, Japan. With a certain degree of partiality, my final choice would be either Le Corbusier's Cabanon, which is the quintessence of his personality and his art, a precise answer to human needs and a jewel of cabinet-making, with an extraordinary relationship to the Mediterranean; or La Petite Maison on the bank of the Léman, which makes you feel as though your are inside a camera obscura scanning the landscape. And Maison La Roche - the unrecognized chef-d'œuvre - in Paris is pas mal non plus, albeit the distance from the sea…

What's the biggest challenge you face right now?
The great challenge for the foundation, and for all lovers of the architecture of modernity, is the permanence of buildings faced with today's profound transformations: changes in ownership or usage, new regulations drastically applied, environmental constraints, the threats of ongoing urbanization, the indifference of public authorities, lack of sensitivity of the architects in charge of restoration, public incomprehension, etc. 20th-century buildings, as we know, are not looked at in the same way as those of earlier periods. (And even if, lacking sufficient distance, we cannot yet properly evaluate them, similar risks face even more recent buildings). Yet all these buildings are part of what makes up the diachronic and archaeological identity of cities and sites.

What's next?

‘United we stand.’ The recent development of networks around 20th -century buildings is a tremendous vehicle for the future. Iconic Houses is playing a role in providing answers to future challenges. We can also count on the owners and inhabitants, who are very attached to these buildings and are ready to defend them. This is a message that needs to be passed on to coming generations. It is for reasons like this that we feel encouraged to provide events for young - and even very young - members of the public.

Which 21st-century home would you nominate as a future iconic house?
‘Towards a poor architecture’ will be the new watchword. Architecture returning to essential values, like those represented by Wang Shu for example. Perhaps I would nominate buildings that we will be able to repair ourselves?

Wang Shu, Five Scattered Houses by Amateur Architecture Studio (2003-2006) Ningbo, China