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Josep Lluís Sert (1902—1983) was born in Barcelona, Spain, the son of a successful textile manufacturer. Sert studied architecture there in the 1920s and, along with some of his classmates, became dissatisfied with then-mainstream classical design. Under his leadership they invited Le Corbusier to Barcelona, giving him an airplane tour of the city. This was the beginning of a lifelong friendship between Sert and the influential Paris-based modernist architect.

Sert began designing apartment buildings and a jewelry store in Barcelona, and in 1931, around the same time as the establishment of the Second Spanish Republic, Sert and his Catalan associates began publishing an avant-garde journal, Actividades Contemporanea. They also participated in the first meeting of the Congrès International d'Architecture Moderne (CIAM; International Congress of Modern Architecture) ...

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