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  1. #1
    evilC's Avatar
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    Brutalism (and other architectural styles)

    Aside from the 'Brutalist stadia' thread, I don't think we've had a dedicated thread for the style since OldTF ...so I thought I'd start one! I thought we might as well make it a general architecture thread too, so as to increase and widen discussion.

    It was this photo, below, that triggered it, since I thought this would tickle the fancy of many of you Brutalism enthusiasts (of which I am not one, I have to say). However, you have to marvel at the warped imagination of those that designed it ...and those who commisioned it, too - especially since it was a government building: the Ministry Of Transport building, in Tbilisi, Georgia

    -


  2. #2
    WOM's Avatar
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    And again, today. Maybe yesterday.


  3. #3
    Toby Gymshorts's Avatar
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    It looks great with a coat of paint and a big, daft atrium attached.

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    Ginger Yellow's Avatar
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    That's awesome. The thing about Brutalism is that when it's great, it's amazing, but when it's not, it's horrific and, well, brutalising.

  5. #5
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    Owen Hatherley is worth reading if you like this kind of stuff.

  6. #6
    I was sad about Robin Hood Gardens being demolished, but even I would have found it bleak sometimes.

    I see the V&A have acquired a chunk of it, which they hope to display sometime.

  7. #7
    I never got Pimlico School though.

  8. #8
    Kevin S's Avatar
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    We did have this thread, but a lot of the pictures have disappeared in the intervening time.

  9. #9
    I was sorry to lose this building in the City, a few years ago.



    If you're thinking it looks like it's part of the Barbican, you're right. But its location was sort of semi-detached from the rest, so they got away with demolishing it. In fairness, the expensive flats that replaced it sit upon a new building for the Guildhall School of Music, so something good came of it.

  10. #10

    Philosophy?
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    Roger Stevens building, Leeds


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    As a bonus, Steve McQueen and Ali McGraw



    Isn't a love of brutalism is a form of nostalgia for an unrealised future? The architecture of a world in which everyone was provided for. You would perch on your concrete sofa listening to kosmiche muzik through out-sized headphones while reading works of Critical Theory.
    Sigh...

  11. #11
    Oh cool, is this the thread where people convince themselves that massively alienating, ugly as fuck concrete blocks actually represented something progressive?

  12. #12

    My old secondary school (since demolished).

    My old secondary school (since demolished).








    No doubt the architects would be dismayed to learn that the place was absolutely loathed by students and staff alike.

  13. #13
    antoine polus's Avatar
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    Brutalism is supposed to be functional and efficient though, isn't it? That first building has loads of suspended pieces that must have cost a fortune to engineer.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by antoine polus View Post
    Brutalism is supposed to be functional and efficient though, isn't it? That first building has loads of suspended pieces that must have cost a fortune to engineer.
    I can't say I've ever associated Brutalism with being efficient and functional. Like most styles, the architect will want to spend whatever the client allows.

  15. #15
    That's a bleak looking school, ooh aah.

    I nearly went to a now demolished Brutalist School too. Nobody seems to have any natural pictures of it, so there are only arty pictures on architecture sites, but it looks great. Designed by the Barbican architects.

    https://www.architecture.com/image-l...RIBA56064.html

  16. #16
    WOM's Avatar
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    I went to a lovely brutalist school designed by Raymond Moriyama. Lovely if you like hard surfaces and oddly shaped rooms, which I did, I guess.

    But it was also open-concept, so anything going on in one room was disruptive to what was going on in the next. One hallway had 3 open-sided classrooms along it, so one kid walking to the washroom would catch the eye of - and momentarily distract - up to 90 kids. And a choir and band rehearsal in the common room meant game-over for the four classrooms that opened on to it. And not one room had windows to the outdoors. The three classrooms with slit-windows along their ceiling level had had them added later due to complaints.

  17. #17
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by antoine polus View Post
    Brutalism is supposed to be functional and efficient though, isn't it? That first building has loads of suspended pieces that must have cost a fortune to engineer.
    Brutalism gets its name from Breton Brut concrete, not any reflection on the style. If anything it should offer escape from the formal regular shapes of International Style modernism. You can mould anything with reinforced concrete, if anything Brutalism can tend to the grotesque and ornamental rather than rationality. The (pointless in themselves but very pretty) abstract roof sculptures and massive diagonal treelike struts lifting the building off the ground at Unite d’Habitation in Marseilles is probably the daddy of the whole thing.
    Last edited by Lang Spoon; 27-11-2017 at 20:45.

  18. #18
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    And properly maintained, concrete can look fine, just fine. But I may be the only person ever to have visited Embra Uni at George Sq and liked the 60s madness on two sides better than the piss mediocre early Georgian guff on the other two sides- just cos it’s old doesn’t make it automatically worth saving, so my opinion is undoubtedly worth fuck all on this.
    Last edited by Lang Spoon; 27-11-2017 at 22:45.

  19. #19
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    Irish Central Bank, Busaras, probably the best examples in Dublin (from a very small list of decent buildings late 20c and beyond: I believe the beyond Shit new Conference Centre (too small, too iconic) was designed by someone who worked on Busaras, guess his talents have dwindled a bit).
    Last edited by Lang Spoon; 27-11-2017 at 19:17.

  20. #20
    Exposed concrete looks shit almost all of the time, and I hate it when Grand Designs go all industrial.

    Mind you, I also hate the minimalist giant room with bare white walls that also seems to be the default finish.

  21. #21
    The South Bank buildings have been transformed by good night lighting.

    This building on Kingsland Road looks lovely lit up at night, a bit shit in the cold light of grey.


  22. #22
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    After its cameo on the European Cup Trivia thread, best brutalist building in Glasgow not derelict, Anniesland Court. Built before the Trellick Tower, and easier on the eye, to me anyway.
    Last edited by Lang Spoon; 27-11-2017 at 21:28.

  23. #23
    Gerontophile's Avatar
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    That's my old stomping ground right there ^.

  24. #24
    Lang Spoon's Avatar
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    Heh, it is mostly citizens of a certain age stacked in its 24 storeys, no?

  25. #25
    Gerontophile's Avatar
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    Not almost 40 years ago.

    *Actually, they might have been. For some reason, then, it was the safest place in the area to skin and spark up. Probably because there was always a wind rushing through the ground floor.

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