A New Art Space ‘MAMO’ Launches on Top off Iconic Corbusier Building

The French designer Ora-Ito sits with a bust of Le Corbusier created by the artist Xavier Veilhan.
Photo by Stephane Aboudaram/Galerie Perrotin, Hong Kong & Paris


Le Corbusier’s Cité Radieuse is an extensive apartment complex in Marseille, which was completed in the early 1950s.
Often described as a “vertical village,” it has 337 apartments, a restaurant, a hotel, a bookstore and a nursery school. France classified it as a historical monument in the 1980s. When the building’s rooftop gym and solarium went up for sale in 2010, the French designer Ora-Ito purchased it.

He has transformed the rooftop of Cité Radieuse into MAMO, short for MArseille MOdulor, a site for exhibitions and creative ateliers.

The overhaul was a three-year undertaking that involved a full restoration of the original rooftop structure which included the realization of design elements in Le Corbusier’s blueprints.

MAMO’s public inauguration last week is a feather in the cap for Marseille, which has been christened the 2013 European Capital of Culture. Ora-Ito’s friend and sometimes collaborator, the French artist Xavier Veilhan, has the first exhibition, a collection of large-scale sculptures created for the space. During warm weather, the rooftop will showcase rotating outdoor exhibitions of established artists’ work; in chillier seasons, MAMO will present smaller shows of up-and-coming artist in an indoor space.

“Le Corbusier would be proud,” Ora-Ito said. “It’s an homage to a master.”

Le MAMO: Marseille Modulor opens June 8 with the exhibition “Architectones” by Xavier Veilhan; 280 Boulevard Michelet, 13008 Marseille, France mamo.fr

About Mark Westall

Mark Westall is the founder and editor of FAD magazine, a curation of the world’s most interesting culture, and Creative Director of FAD Agency, a strategy & creative agency working with brands to solve business problems using cultural tools. In 2008 following his passion for art he founded what has grown to become FAD magazine. FAD magazine is internationally recognized as a key figure within the emerging and contemporary art world, and has been selected as official partner by organizations as diverse as Moniker Art Fair, START, Volta and Christie’s. In addition Mark is a columnist for City Magazine.

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