"Chandigarh tells a story in which the architectural visions of a great master meet the political visions of a postcolonial society," writes Shaun Fynn in the introduction to his book on the Indian city designed by Le Corbusier. How have those visions worked out, more than six decades on? It really takes photographs-with which the book is amply illustrated-to say. Le Corbusier's raw concrete surfaces have retained their brutal beauty, but some of the city's parks, notes Fynn, have suffered: "Today Chandigarh is a city proud to display its private wealth through prosperity and automobile assets, while the upkeep and preservation of the civic space remains an ongoing issue." - Landscape Architecture
Combining detailed plans and contextualising information with a wealth of viscerally engaging yet strangely haunting photography, Fynn opens a door into what it's like to live in present-day Chandigarh - a UNESCO World Heritage Site that retains a sense of mystery. Fynn captures moments of pride as well as flashes of decay. The text also includes invaluable insight in an interview with one of Le Corbusier's original team.
"In his new book, Chandigarh Revealed, photographer, designer, and writer Shaun Fynn examines the reality of the planned city, creating a photographic profile that shows how "the patina of time" has shaped the city in unforeseen ways..[T]ime, climate, and neglect (many structures are abandoned or incomplete) have taken their toll, as Fynn's photos show. Chandigarh Revealed expertly captures the impact on the complex, as well as the chaotic adaptations and adjustments made by contemporary Indian residents." - Curbed
"In Chandigarh Revealed, UK born designer and photographer Shaun Fynn has captured the spirit of Chandigarh-giving us an honest portrayal of the contemporary city through his camera's lens, complete with essays on the city's political and urban planning history, and providing us with a rare glimpse into how the city has fared in its first half century.. Chandigarh Revealed is a frank and honest portrayal of this city. It is a wonder to behold, pointing out that while Chandigarh is not perfect, it is as close to the ideal as could be given its volatile mixture of religion, politics, and geography. all orchestrated by an architect whose vision of how order could be achieved helped to shape the modern world and all that would follow."
"Fynn provides a superb look at North India's Chandigarh, Le Corbusier's singular planned city, 60 years after its completion..The book reveals a futuristic vision that has been absorbed by contemporary Indian society without being subsumed, showcasing both Corbusier's tremendous work and modern accretions and deviations....This is a visually astute and intimately observed study." - Publisher's Weekly
"First planned and designed to accommodate some 500,000 people, today, more than a million people live in Chandigarh, as the city has expanded, and slums have taken over areas where the plan was never fully realized. Some 50 years later, Le Corbusier and Nehru's city appears both glorious and derelict, visionary and an anachronism in Chandigarh Revealed, a fascinating new book by photographer and designer Shaun Fynn." - The Dirt (American Society of Landcape Architects)
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