After gaining independence in 1947, India embarked on a journey to manifest its new democratic identity, commissioning the creation of a modernistic city that would epitomize contemporary design and urban planning. The Chandigarh Capitol Complex, designed primarily by the legendary Le Corbusier, also highlighted the genius of Pierre Jeanneret, a name synonymous with functional artistry and sustainable design.

Jeanneret’s Design Philosophy

In 1951, Pierre Jeanneret took a pivotal step by moving to India, where he would integrate deeply with the culture and craftsmanship of the region for fifteen years. His approach was straightforward yet revolutionary—melding local materials like teak and rattan with traditional Indian craftsmanship. This synthesis not only respected the local economy but also paved the way for creations that were both affordable and iconic.

Function and Form:

Jeanneret’s designs emphasized utility without compromising aesthetics. Each piece of furniture was not just a functional item but a piece of art that stood the test of time.

From Discarded to Desirable

By the 1980s, the novelty of Jeanneret’s furniture had faded in Chandigarh, and many original pieces ended up in junkyards or were sold for firewood. This changed in the late 1990s when a French collector recognized the inherent value of these designs, sparking a resurgence in mid-century modernism that catapulted Jeanneret’s work from near oblivion to high-demand collectibles globally.

Prohibition and Price Surge:

Recognizing the cultural and monetary value of Jeanneret’s designs, the Indian government banned the export of this furniture in 2011, making these pieces even rarer and more sought-after at international auctions.

Identifying a Jeanneret Original

Despite their popularity, defining an authentic Pierre Jeanneret Chandigarh piece remains a subject of debate. There is no official license or singular manufacturer; instead, hundreds of artisans across Chandigarh contributed to various iterations of Jeanneret’s designs.

What to Look For:

Authentic Jeanneret furniture often includes specific design elements—signature V-shaped legs, cane seats, and a minimalistic yet robust frame indicative of his style.

TreeHause’s Capitol Collection: An Ode to Sustainability

At TreeHause, our inaugural Capitol Collection is inspired by Jeanneret’s legacy of integrating local craft into modern design. Each piece is a celebration of sustainable practices, using the same materials and techniques favored by Jeanneret and his contemporaries.

A Modern Take on Classic Designs:

We believe in affordability and sustainability, ensuring that our re-editions are accessible without compromising on quality or design integrity.


Pierre Jeanneret’s journey with the Chandigarh Capitol Complex is more than a tale of architectural accomplishment; it is a narrative of sustainable, thoughtful design resonating with contemporary trends. At TreeHause, we are proud to carry forward this legacy, inviting you to rediscover and own a piece of history with our Capitol Collection.

Explore our collection today and learn more about our commitment to sustainable furniture.

April 24, 2024 — Sylvia Dickerson