Thomas Karrer

2023
The Power of Utopia – Living with Le Corbusier in Chandigarh
Thomas Karrer and Karin Bucher
Switzerland
85′
Shortly after the Partition of India and liberation from British colonial rule, a new capital for the Punjab was to be built from scratch at the foot of the Himalayas, with the former capital of Lahore having become part of Pakistan. The planned city of Chandigarh would stand for the new democracy, progress and faith in the future. Architects from the West were called upon – first Albert Mayer, and then the Swiss-French architect Le Corbusier. Plans, visions and utopias came together. For Le Corbusier, Chandigarh offered a unique opportunity to complete his life’s work and put his urban planning ideas into practice. His vision was to create a modern, humane and just city, built according to the “measure of man”, which allowed for a cultural life and harmonious interaction between people and nature. On the 70th anniversary of Le Corbusier’s planned city, we reflect on whether this vision has become a reality in Chandigarh. The film accompanies people on their journeys through the city, seeking out settings and scenes that reveal the inspiring interplay of old dreams and new life, the utopian and the everyday, decay and quiet poetry. A contemporary witness recalls the early days of the city. The director of the Le Corbusier Centre, an artist, an actor and an architect all talk about the experience of settling here, and contemplate their life in and with Chandigarh. We meet residents who offer an insight into the city as we roam and immerse ourselves in the everyday life that has evolved around the built environment.
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2019
Zwischenwelten
Thomas Karrer
Switzerland
87′
In the Appenzell region of Switzerland, spiritual healers have always been part of local traditions. Here, natural health practitioners create tinctures and salves in an attempt to complement the procedures of official medicine. This leads to many unexpected and dynamic forms of collaboration.
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