Le Corbusier Kitchen Conservation: Video Update

In the March of 2012, conservators in MoMA’s sculpture conservation lab undertook a yearlong treatment of an original kitchen by Charlotte Perriand and Le Corbusier from the seminal urban construction the Unite d’Habitation. All of the kitchen components (including the drain!) were transported from Marseilles, France, to our lab in New York City, and reassembled for research and treatment. This was a collaborative project between conservators and curators to restore this well-used, 60-year-old kitchen to a state that would be reflect the original conception of Le Corbusier’s and Charlotte Perriand’s pivotal design. The video below presents an overview of this process, and the decisions we’ve made so far along the way.

And be sure to visit the blog again soon for our final post on the Le Corbusier kitchen conservation project.


Amazing to see the kitchen from the unit essentially intact. A worthwhile effort to conserve; the research on the original paint and intent is fascinating. Thanks for posting this video.

I wonder why the unit was removed. If the apartments are condos I guess an owners could do anything they wanted. I thought Jean Prouve designed the cabinets and I see his signature dihedral that he used often.

Dear Mr. Mcgoohan, The kitchen was removed from many of the apartments. The interior apartments of the building is not landmarked so the owners can basically do what they want. Our kitchen is most likely cobbled together from at least 3 different apartments. Jean Prouve was involved in the project but the kitchen was designed by Charlotte Perriand. I am sure there are some overlaps with their work. Ms Perriand also used the dihedral shape in her designs of cabinet pulls. Thanks for your posting. Roger

Thanks for the clarification. I visited the apartment building in the summer of \’65 but unfortunately was unable to access an apartment. In fact there was a sign at the entry informing students and visitors that they were not entitled to enter. But I went anyway and went to the roof and to the “street” with the shops which were empty at that time. I read in the NYT that once a year an apartment is open to the public and displays an installation by a designer.and, one would hope, original furnishings. that would be worth a trip.

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