The beautiful thing about automobiles is that they represent – or can be made to represent and honor – a specific cultural movement in visual arts and design.
Actually, each flourishing era of style was – and still is – captured in various domains, arts and practices, greatly influenced by the specific trend, ranging from architecture, to fashion, to the automobile industry.
Take for instance the “Art Deco” movement – it was an interwar style that represented glamour, luxury, exuberance and faith in technological progress, often characterized by rich colors, bold geometric shapes and rich ornamentation. And Renault wanted to pay a tribute to it and to its initiator – modernist architect, designer and painter, Le Corbusier – with an intriguing looking concept.
In fact, to mark the 50th anniversary of the architect’s death, France’s Centre des Monuments Nationaux is organizing an exhibition called “Cars for living: the automobile and modernism in the 20th and 21st centuries”, at the Villa Savoye in Poissy (from October 22, 2015 to March 20, 2016)
Baptized the Coupe Corbusier (without leaving anything to the imagination), the study was created in order to investigate the topic of “French cultural objects”, by focusing on the golden age of the automobile in the 1930s, when the pre-war design was a mix of futuristic and traditional style cues. As Le Corbusier believed that new technology rendered old styles obsolete, the movement saw the birth of modern architecture, and the modern automobiles.
Staying true to the Art Deco style, Renault’s study combines an elegant, geometric structure with lavish design approaches (like the grille) – thus conceiving a unique interpretation of a modern successor to the pre-war design philosophy, inspired by the architect’s modernist principles and theories.
Unfortunately, the concept won’t probably make into production and it won’t be a style-base for future Renault-branded cars, but it has a design language that we – in the modern world – are not familiar with, and that makes it very special.