The design was a collaboration between Pierre Chareau (a furniture and interiors designer), Bernard Bijvoet (a Dutch architect working in Paris since 1927) and Louis Dalbet (craftsman metalworker). For four years, Chareau and his collaborators worked on the house. Dalbet moved to the site.
In 1928, the French firm of Saint Gobain began to market, with no manufacturer’s guarantee, square, 20x20x4 pieces with fluted edges that offered an excellent external finish. However, the company refused to guarantee that its blocks would be self-bearing, so in order to prevent possible breakages of those at the base, Chareau found himself obliged to create a hidden steel grid to group them into panels of 4x6 blocks. These panels became the basic element of the design.
In 1930, Chareau covered this steel framework with a mortar to achieve an apparently seamless surface, without a visible skeleton, as though it were an unlimited transparent plane.
However, in the 1960s this continuous covering was removed from the main façade and replaced by metal bars that emphasized the interior sub-structure by carrying it through to the exterior.
1919 - The first affordable public housing built in Paris
1920- First commercial radio broadcast
1923 - Art and Technology A new Unity exhibition , Bauhaus, Weimar Adolf Behne writes der Moderne Zwecbau, published in 1926
1924 - Paris hosts the Olympic games
1925 - Exposition des Arts Decoratifs et Industriels Paris
1925 - Art Deco Exposition in Paris
1928 - Building in France, Sigfried Giedon
1928 - The Congrès internationaux d'architecture moderne – CIAM (International Congresses of Modern Architecture) was founded a group of 28 European architects; the organization focused on spreading the principles of Modern Movement through landscape, industrial design, urbanism and many other domains. The organization was organized by Le Corbusier, Sigfried Giedon, and also included Pierre Jeanneret, El Lissitzky, Josef Frank, Pierre Chareau and many more. CIAM was formin aspects of Modern Movement as well as trying to imply them in political and economical sense.
1928-1932 - Maison de Verre construction
1931- Le Corbusier, Villa Savoye, Poissy France
1934 - February 6 - A demonstration by the far right in Place de la Concorde
1935 - The Popular Front wins the general election in May. Their victory is marked by spontaneous street celebrations and demonstrations, as well as a number of work shortages
1936 - Nikolaus Pevsner, Pioneers of the Modern Movement
1939 - World War II begins
During the occupation the house was closed and emptied of all its furniture which was hidden and kept safe. The Germans wanted to requisition the Maison de Verre but they soon realized that they could neither heat nor light it.
1940 - June 3 An air raid kills 254 people
June 14 The Germans occupy Paris
November 11 Students demonstrate on Place de l’Etoile
December 26 The city coucil is suspended
1941- foreign Jews living in Paris are rounded up and deported
1942 - June 16-17 French Jews living in Paris are rounded up and deported
1944 - August 25 - The liberation of Paris
After the Liberation in 1944 the Dalsaces returned to Paris and lived in the maids’ rooms above the Maison de Verre while their house was being restored after four years of neglect.
1952 - May 18 - The Algerian Population of Paris demonstrate in favor of Algerian independence
1954 - Vietnam divided after French defeat Algerian war of independence begins
The Dalsaces were politically active, and in the 1950s the house was the setting for the foundation of the Association of Doctors Against War and Fascism. It also housed secret peace talks between the French and the Vietnamese, as well as meetings in support of peace in Algeria.
1961 - September 20 After riots break out following a demonstration in favor of Algerian independence, a curfew is imposed on Algerians
1962 - Algeria becomes independent
The house stayed in the Dalsace family for more than 70 years.
1980’s - Dr. Dalsace’s daughter - Aline Vellay and her husband considered selling the house to French government. Though it might be turned into a national landmark, as le Corbusier’s Villa Savoye, but the government didn’t take them up on it.