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Super-Crans

07/03/2012

The Tour de Super-Crans (built 1963-1969) stands on a high plateau overlooking the Rhone Valley in the Valais canton of Switzerland. It's architect, Jean-Marie Ellenberger was born in Bern in 1913, and moved to Crans-Montana, the ski resort town that the tower stands above, in order to combat the tuberculosis he had contracted in his early childhood. 

 

The town of Crans-Montana today is an amusing combination of wealthy skiing and golf enthusiasts and fur-coated women with tiny dogs. The fan shaped residential Super-Crans tower, with it's primary-coloured roller blinds stands out as a beautiful example of Le Corbusier-eqsue modern architecture (Ellenberger interned under the great Swiss born architect and designer in 1935), amongst a wealth of what can only be described as 'alpine imagery' style architecture; wooden slope-roofed, many balconied structures with recesses, ornaments and bear-and-pine tree murals, a sort of hybrid between Tyrolean souvenirs and theatre sets.

 

Susan Strongman

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