This month, the Sydney Opera House has welcomed one of the artworks Jørn Utzon originally intended to hang within his ambitious building’s sweeping hallways.
March 31st, 2016
Following Jørn Utzon’s famous departure from the final design and build of the Sydney Opera House, many intricacies of his original scheme were forgotten, disregarded or overridden. This month, the Sydney Opera House has welcomed one of the artworks Utzon originally intended to hang within his ambitious building’s sweeping hallways.
A tapestry, envisioned by Utzon himself in collaboration with famed painter, urbanist and architect Le Corbusier, has been discovered, purchased and transported to Australian shores, and is now hanging in the Opera House’s Western Foyers. Titled Les Dés Sont Jetés (The Dice are Cast), the artwork is an extraordinarily rare creation for many reasons – including the fact that Le Corbusier notoriously refused to collaborate with other architects. One year after winning the Sydney Opera House design competition, Utzon approached Le Corbusier to collaborate on the project. At this stage, the Sydney Opera House only existed in Utzon’s fantastical drawings – but incredibly enough Le Corbusier agreed.
The artwork was woven in wool in the French town of Aubusson in 1960, before being delivered to Utzon’s family home in Denmark. And there it lay, first in the dining room, and then later within the workshop of Utzon’s son, Jan. With the support of enthusiasts and donors such as Peter Weiss, the tapestry has ‘come home’ as part of the Opera House’s 10-year renewal and rejuvenation project.
“Our Decade of Renewal is about ensuring the bold spirit that inspired the Opera House continues to inspire future generations,” said Sydney Opera House CEO, Lousie Herron.
Les Dés Sont Jetés offers an intriguing glimpse into Utzon’s original Opera House vision, and is an astonishing collaboration between two of the 20th century’s most intriguing architects.
Sydney Opera House
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