In 1917, the Russian writer Viktor Shklovsky described the need for poets and artists to ‘make strange’, to interrupt our familiarity with language and form and thereby encourage us to perceive ordinary relationships anew. Made twenty years later as the joint effort of two architects, a highly inventive metal fabricator, an aviation engineer and an enlightened mayor, the “Maison du Peuple at Clichy suggests this same will to question familiar constructions, but this time by means of a building. This lecture will consider the creation of the Maison du Peuple as a poetic enterprise, in both its conceptual and material aspects. Kevin Donovan (Universty College Dublin Architecture) was in residence at the CCI during the summer of 2015 as the Rev. Liam Swords Bursary winner.