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Discussion in 'Personal' started by lanokia, Feb 24, 2020.

  1. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    The BBC has a piece arguing for a re-evaluation of 'Brutalism'.


    So... which is better?
    Or do both have their merits?

    What is your favourite Brutalist building?

    I remembering seeing Boston town hall...


    Minecraft before Minecraft was a thing.

    Or is this more your opinion?


    Personally, I like the more natural Edwardian/Victorian style of architecture... a more bucolic style with a more integrated sense of aesthetic to the urban landscape. Brutalism is too much of a harsh rejection of human aesthetic sensibilities. But by 'human' I mean my inherent sense of aesthetics... I don't mean that 'if you disagree with me you are not human'... have to explain that.
  2. Kandahar

    Kandahar Lead commenter

    Brutalism doesn't fit too well with our climate. On the continent - the open spaces and kinder climate are more forgiving.

    I will give this more thought and reply later.
    alex_teccy likes this.
  3. Duke of York

    Duke of York Star commenter

    Concrete buildings always looks filthy within a year. I know all buildings are subjected to the same amount of grime, but brick doesn't show it up so badly.
    Aquamarina1234 likes this.
  4. artboyusa

    artboyusa Star commenter

    I used to work across the street from Boston City Hall. After awhile you stopped noticing how hideous it is. Never stopped minding how hideous it is, though.
    For me, the best architecture is Georgian. Looks good outside, feels good inside. Not hard to build and not hard to maintain. What more do you want?
    lexus300 and alex_teccy like this.
  5. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    It's not my favourite style of architecture by any means but I suppose like any style there are better and worse examples of it. I like Trellick Tower for the thought that went into the design and for how distinctive it is.
  6. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I had to search for it...

    Doesn't appeal to me... looks rather flimsy.
  7. mothorchid

    mothorchid Star commenter

    le Corbusier did it like no-one else...


  8. Kandahar

    Kandahar Lead commenter

    Yes indeed. They seem to do better on the continent for this reason. I am thinking of France (Le Corbusier) - the country inwhich it was invented - and whose climate it was designed for. Sadly, the UK took it up when during slum clearance - puttin up faceless towerblock minus 90% of Le Corbusier's features.

    mothorchid and needabreak like this.
  9. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    I don't know if this qualifies as Brutalist, but the DWP building in Leeds took my breath away when I first drove past it. No wonder it's nicknamed The Kremlin, or The Ministry of Truth:


    Jonathan Meades does some good documentaries on modern architecture - I especially liked his programmes on Fascist era architecture, appropriately named Jerry Building and Ben Building. (Ben and Jerry geddit?)

    Here's a panoramic pic I took of Karl Marx Hof in Heiligenstadt, a suburb of Vienna. Very striking - actually built in the late 1920s, and not in the post-war Communist era as you might expect.

    Karl Marx Hof.jpg
    primarycat and Kandahar like this.
  10. Kandahar

    Kandahar Lead commenter

    Yes - very fine architecture indeed from Russia.
  11. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    I've never heard Quarry House called anything like as polite a name as that.
    magic surf bus likes this.
  12. primarycat

    primarycat Star commenter

    Sorry - I should have explained a bit better what I meant. To look at, it's the second small tower that makes it distinctive from the other high rises near it. And that was designed for the lift and plant room for the heating to save space and reduce noise for residents. The flats aren't all identical and light and space is maximised. It's the thought about making it somewhere nice to live that I admire.

    I don't disagree with you about how it looks though.

    lanokia and magic surf bus like this.
  13. Kandahar

    Kandahar Lead commenter

    Yes. A perfect example of how to take Le Corbusier's vertical city / street whilst forgetting all the essential design elements.
    Here in Marseille
  14. smoothnewt

    smoothnewt Star commenter

    I enjoy going to the Barbican, but it's a bit of a Brutalist maze, trying to find your way around. I do like the water features and the manner in which the residents have planted so much greenery on their balconies - I guess to disguise the grey as much as anything else. The water and the greenery soften the harshness of the concrete.

    mothorchid and emerald52 like this.
  15. emerald52

    emerald52 Star commenter

    My favourite is the National Theatre. Inside and out it is just stunning. Love it.
    lindenlea and mothorchid like this.
  16. nomad

    nomad Star commenter

    Park Hill, Sheffield.

    magic surf bus likes this.
  17. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    For concrete and brutal the Wehrmacht certainly knew their stuff - here's one of their installations at Capbreton:


    Do bridges count? Here's a vertical panorama of the bridge between La Rochelle and the Ile de Re:

    lanokia likes this.
  18. nomad

    nomad Star commenter

    Actually, I would consider the bridge more beautiful than brutal.

    Same with this one. (Orwell Bridge, Suffolk)

    Last edited: Feb 24, 2020
    lanokia likes this.
  19. Spiritwalkerness

    Spiritwalkerness Star commenter

    Lincoln's ex-Police Headquarters - Ryvita House

  20. Mangleworzle

    Mangleworzle Star commenter

    I think the idea of "Brutalism" as a form of architecture was used as an excuse in this country for doing things on the cheap, cheap materials, cheap construction techniques, cheap architectural designs etc. They always make me think that they are kind of buildings architects get excited about and give each other awards for, though virtually no-one would want to live or work in them.

    It's utilitarian design which is fine for warehouses and industrial units to maximize space and efficiency, but not anywhere anyone would choose to spend their time.

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