Fresh paint for a 60s building that has fallen into oblivion


Kelly-Louise lives in Karlsruhe. She and her husband bought a 60s house and renovated it with a lot of love. Preserving the original charm of the house was a priority for the two of them. And Kelly-Louise herself explains what happens when some Le Corbusier colours are brought into play,. A valued guest contribution by Kelly-Louise, which shows that colour is an important tool in architecture and Instagram is an exciting medium.


"My grandfather Rudolf H. Maier worked as an architect in Pforzheim since the mid-1950s. His work not only shaped the cityscape of that time, but also influenced me in my interest in the straightforward and tidy architecture of the 1960s/1970s. When the opportunity arose to purchase a house from this period (built in 1966) in Karlsruhe, my husband and I did not find the decision difficult. The flat-roofed house had been empty for several years and seemed to have been forgotten with its mouse-grey paint scheme.


Underline the charm – no renovation of the core

As we entered the house for the first time, we were already thrilled by its original construction, very typical of the year when it was built, which is precisely what may have deterred some interested parties. However, we did not have a core renovation in mind, as we wanted to try to merely emphasize the architecture and charm of the house within the framework of the necessary renovation work.


"Colour in architecture – a means as powerful as the ground plan and section. Or better: polychromy, a component of the ground plan and the section itself."

- Le Corbusier -


We were supported by my father and his painting company GimberOptimaler. So the idea matured to choose a Le Corbusier colour as an accent for the exterior, which should also run like a red thread through the interior. The wall painting of St. George from the Karlsruhe Majolica gave us some colours. Therefore, blue, yellow and green tones were on the shortlist. Inspired by the woods surrounding us in the Karlsruhe-Bergwald district, we finally decided on 4320F vert olive vif. For us, it was clearly an olive green, but since then our guests have regularly been divided on whether the colour fields of our house shine in green-yellow or yellow-green. Depending on the time of day and the season, the colour looks different but always lively.

Fresh colour for a 'grey mouse’

We wanted to feel this liveliness also in the interior. Our furnishings – a mix of the usual classics and vintage furniture typical of the year of manufacture – therefore take up tones like vert olive, just like our Knoll Antimott Daybed, which we had covered in a muted green-yellow velvet fabric.

After spending one year in the new house, one thing is clear to us: Whether it is green-yellow or yellow-green, we are very happy with our choice of colours and are delighted that we have been able to breathe new life into the once grey mouse of the street".

Text: ©Kelly-Louise Gimber



4320F vert olive vif

4320F vert olive vif The unique olive green. Green-yellow or yellow-green? A very popular colour, a Le Corbusier classic. Very modern, dynamic; changing from yellow-green to green-yellow in the course of light. Le Corbusier included this unique olive green together with 4320G vert 59 in the second colour collection of 1959 in the Architectural Polychromy. In his book Farbenlehre, Goethe said about the effect of green: "You don't want to go further, and you can't go any further. Therefore, for rooms in which one is always in, the green colour is usually chosen as wallpaper."

Green, as the colour of the centre, is calming without tiring. Green is the most neutral colour in our symbolism and a strong colour that stands for life, spring and growth. Le Corbusier's polychromy offers a total of nine shades of green, seven of which were used in the first colour keyboard of 1931. In modern symbolism, olive green stands for health and longevity.

Available in the beautiful Le Corbusier colour 4320F vert olive vif are the following products from licensed manufacturers of the exclusive brand Les Couleurs® Le Corbusier:

• Interior and exterior wall paints from KEIMFARBEN AG

• Light switches and sockets from ALBRECHT JUNG GMBH & CO. KG

• Wallpaint and laquers from Karl Bubenhofer AG

• Carpets from Anker Gebr. Schoeller GmbH + Co. KG

• Powder coatings from IGP Powder Coatings

• Bistro and restaurant chair 'Tristan' from manufakt

• Wallpaper from Arte NV


Of the house ©Kelly-Louise Gimber

This text came about as a result of pictures that Kelly-Louise auf Instagram posted on Instagram, which the Marketing Manager of Les Couleurs Suisse AG found extremely positive.

Pläne: ©Helmut Otto

The Le Corbusier colour poLyChro® from KEIMFARBEN GMBH, licensed Les Couleurs® Le Corbusier Partner, was used for the house in Karlsruhe.

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