The Couvent de La Tourette from 1960 to the present day. Future Discernibility of Past Interventions





Modern Movement, Modern architecture, Modern housing


The La Tourette Convent, built by Le Corbusier in Eveux (1953–1960) was subjected to interventions very soon after its inauguration. The article presents a critical analysis of these interventions: those overseen by Fernand Gardien (until 1964) right after completion; those undertaken before the complex was listed and for which limited documentation is available (1964–1979); the restoration campaign led by the Architecte en Chef des Monuments Historiques (ACMH) Mortamet, who followed an approach based on the completion of Le Corbusier’s work; lastly the most recent campaign, overseen by the ACMH Repellin, who succeeded in devising intelligent alternative compliance measures thanks to the fire safety officials. The complex was returned to its original appearance, following an approach that has yet to come to terms with the aging of modern architectural works, but is nevertheless still widely used today in the conservation of 20th century architecture.

How to Cite

Grignolo, R. (2015). The Couvent de La Tourette from 1960 to the present day. Future Discernibility of Past Interventions. Docomomo Journal, (53), 64–73.




Author Biography

Roberta Grignolo, Universita della Svizzera Italiana

Assistant Professor of Restoration and Reuse of 20th Century Architecture at the Accademia di Architettura in Mendrisio, Università della Svizzera italiana (USI), since 2009. She was co-leader of the research project Critical Encyclopaedia for Restoration and Reuse of 20th Century Architecture, a partnership between USI, EPFL, ETHZ and SUPSI (2009–2012).


Archives de la Direction Régionale des Affaires Culturelles, Lyon(DRAC).

Archives de la Fondation Le Corbusier, Paris (FLC).

Archives Départementales du Rhône, Lyon (ADR).

Archives du Couvent de La Tourette, Eveux (ACT).

BOESIGER, Willy, Le Corbusier et Son Atelier Rue de Sèvres 35, OEuvre Complète 1957–1965, Zurich , Girsberger, 1965.

FERRO, Sergio; KEBBAL, Chérif; POTIÉ, Philippe; SIMONNET, Cyrille, Le Corbusier, Le Couvent de La Tourette, Marseille, Editions Parenthèses, 1987.

Médiathèque du Patrimoine, Paris (MP).

PETIT, Jean, Un Couvent de Le Corbusier, Paris, Les Editions de Minuit, 1961.

POTIÉ, Philippe Le Corbusier: Le Couvent Sainte Marie de La Tourette/The Monastery of Sainte Marie de La Tourette, Basel, Birkhäuser, 2001.

REPELLIN, Didier, “La restauration du Couvent Sainte-Marie de La Tourette, Éveux, Rhône-Alpes. Le chantier de restauration”, Monumental, 2013, Semester II, p. 100–102.