The Paris of L’Ivre De Pierres, Narrative Architecture between Words and Drawing


  • Carlos Machado e Moura
  • Luis Miguel Lus Arana



Drawing, Narrative, Architectural reveries, Paper architecture, Utopia


An editorial experiment pursued by Jean-Paul Jungmann between 1977 and 1983, L’Ivre de Pierres provides a series of imaginary visions, mostly of an imaginary Paris, conceived through architectural narrations that were articulated in the pages of a book. This article examines L’Ivre de Pierres’ unconventional approach to figurative writing, as an example of the possibilities of exploring architecture through narrative means, constructing urban narratives through architectural design, and developing architectural criticism through both. L’Ivre de Pierres did not renounce the project in favour of discourse, but employed architectural devices to elaborate a ‘concrete utopia’ instead: one made of potentially realizable projects which, however, were conceived to exist only as (real) fictions in the pages of a book. Firmly rooted in Jungmann’s previous experience with the magazine Utopie, with which it somehow plays a game of mirrors, L’Ivre de Pierres is also linked to the tradition of paper architecture that historically used fiction to produce architectural discourses, criticism, or to think architectural designs. This article researches on the narrative methods and modes – it examines the iconography, the book format, the content and types of texts – used in L’Ivre de Pierres as an example of the potential that these both visual and textual alternative realities have for the reading, thinking and writing of urban places.

Author Biographies

Carlos Machado e Moura

Carlos Machado e Moura is an architect (FAUP, 2006), postgraduate in Architectural Heritage (CEAPA-FAUP, 2013), PhD candidate (PDA-FAUP) and integrated researcher at the University of Porto (CEAU-FAUP). His ongoing PhD research, funded by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT, 2015), focuses on the use of comics and graphic narrative in architectural publications in the 1960s. He is the author of books like Building Views (Circo de Ideias, 2017) and Casas Quinhentistas de Castelo Branco (CMCB/Argumentum, 2008), and a former member of Jornal Arquitectos' editorial team (2016-19). Carlos is currently a working group co-leader and a member of the management committee of COST Action 18126 "Writing urban places" (2019/23) and a researcher of "(EU)ROPA — Rise of Portuguese Architecture" (CES-UC, 2018/21). Recently, he was a recipient of Prémio Távora (OASRN, 2020) and of an honourable mention in Premio Architetto Italiano 2020 (CNAPPC).

Luis Miguel Lus Arana

Luis Miguel [Koldo] Lus Arana is an architect, PhD (University of Navarra, 2013) and urban planner-designer. He holds a Master’s degree in Design Studies from the Harvard Graduate School of Design (2008), in the area of Theory and History of Architecture, and has been visiting scholar in the Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (2008-9), the University of Colorado Denver (2016), and Newcastle University (2019). His research deals with Utopian and Visionary Architecture and Urban Design, and has been invited to lecture about it at the universities of Michigan, Nebraska, Strathclyde, and the Graham Foundation in Chicago among several others. His work has also been published in books, scholarly journals, and architectural media such as the Architectural Review or Architectural Design. Since 2013, he teaches Theory and History of Architecture in the University of Zaragoza.


Jean-Paul Jungmann and Hubert Tonka, La Città Policentrica. Paris/Parme. L’Ivre de Pierres – Vaisseau de Pierres, poster with text for a congress in Nocetto/Parma in April 1984.

Craig Buckley, ‘Introduction: The Echo of Utopia’, in: Craig Buckley and Jean-Louis Violeau (eds.), Utopie: texts and projects 1967-1978 (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2011), 13.

Jean-Paul Jungmann. Interviewed by the authors, 28 May 2015.

Buckley, ‘Introduction’, op. cit. (note 3), 12.

Utopie, ‘Des raisons de l’architecture’, L’Architecture d’Aujourd’hui 138 (1968), 124-145.

Henri Lefebvre, Le Temps des méprises (Paris: Stock, 1975).

Jean Baudrillard, ‘Utopie dialectique’, Utopie 1 (1967), 55.

Jean Aubert interviewed in: Beatriz Colomina and Craig Buckley (eds.), Clip/Stamp/Fold: The Radical Architecture of Little Magazines, 196X to 197X (Barcelona: Actar, 2010), 196.

Hubert Tonka, ‘L’Ivre d’Encres’, L’Ivre de Pierres 1 (1977), 7.

Jean-Paul Jungmann, ‘Histoires à Editer’, in: Hubert Tonka (ed.), Le Guide du Paris de L’Ivre de Pierres (Paris: Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris/ARC, 1982), 15.

Jean-Paul Jungmann, ‘Écrire un projet est racconter la ville’, in: Jean-Paul Jungmann and Hubert Tonka (eds.), L’Ivre de Pierres chez Cl.-N. Ledoux (Paris: Aérolande, 1984), 3.

Jean-Paul Jungmann, L’Image en Architecture – de la représentation et de son empreinte utopique (Paris: Éditions La Villette, 1996).

Jungmann, Les Années L’Ivre de Pierres. À la recherche d’une Architecture possible [1975-1986] (Paris: Sens&Tonka, 2020), 55.

Tonka, ‘L’Ivre d’Encres’, op. cit. (note 11).

Jean-Paul Jungmann, interviewed in: Colomina and Buckley, op. cit. (note 10), 352.

Some authors, like Peter Wilson in ‘Le Pont des Arts’ (LIDP 4), rejected classic perspectives, opting for different yet highly expressive points of view.

William S. Saunders, ‘Rem Koolhaas’s Writing on Cities: Poetic Perception and Gnomic Fantasy’, Journal of Architectural Education 51/1 (1997), 61.

Aérolande in La Città Policentrica. Paris/Parme. L’Ivre de Pierres – Vaisseau de Pierres, on occasion of a congress in Nocetto/Parma in April 1984.

Jean Aubert in: Colomina and Buckly, op. cit. (note 10), 196.

Henri Lefebvre, Le droit à la ville (Paris: Anthropos, 1968).

Jean Critton, ‘Opera des Halles, projet scénographique pour l’aménagement des Halles’ and ‘Phénomène de parthénogénèse architecturale au Forum des Halles’, L’Ivre de Pierres 3 (1980), 33-55.

‘De l’espace tropologique: un premier crayon de mausolées pour la place de la Concorde, par Jean-Jacques Lequeu, le 15 janvier 1815, restauré par Philippe Duboy. and Un forum au coeur du Paris révolutionnaire. Le projet de Théâtre des Arts de Charles de Wailly, 1798’, introduced by Daniel Rabreau, L’Ivre de Pierres 1 (1977).

Jean-Paul Jungmann, in: Jean Dethier (ed.), Images et imaginaires d’architecture, dessin, peinture, photographie, arts graphiques, théâtre, cinéma en Europe aux XIXe et XXe siècles, exhibition catalogue (Paris: Centre Georges Pompidou, 1984), 140.

François Herrenschmidt, ‘Dialogue sur l’Utopie d’Hier et la Verité d’Aujourd’hui’, in: Tonka, Le Guide du Paris, op. cit. (note 12), 131.

Antoine Chauvin, ‘Le Pari(s) de Jean-Paul Jungmann: Étude de sept projets théoriques pour la ville de Paris’, Mémoire de Master en Histoire de l’Architecture, Université Paris I (2014), 43.

Émile Zola, The Belly of Paris (Oxford World’s Classics, 2007 [1873]), 25.

Jean Aubert, ‘Le Square des égoutiers’, L’Ivre de Pierres 2 (1978), 7.

Jean-Paul Jungmann’s monumental ‘La gare vers l’Est’, L’Ivre de Pierres 3 (1980).




How to Cite

Machado e Moura, C., & Lus Arana, L. M. (2021). The Paris of L’Ivre De Pierres, Narrative Architecture between Words and Drawing. Writingplace, (5), 72–96.