THE ANXIOUS JOURNEY - Brutalist Architecture

BRUTALISM - ( history )

Brutalist architecture flourished from the 1950s to the mid-1970s, descending from the modernist architectural movement of the early 20th century. The term originates from the French word for "raw", as Le Corbusier described his choice of material béton brut, raw concrete. British architectural critic Reyner Banham adapted the term into "brutalism" (originally "New Brutalism") to identify the emerging style.

The term "brutalism" was originally coined by the Swedish architect Hans Asplund to describe Villa Göth in Uppsala, designed in 1949 by his contemporaries Bengt Edman and Lennart Holm. He originally used the Swedish-language term nybrutalism (new brutalism), which was picked up by a group of visiting English architects, including Michael Ventris. In England, the term was further adopted by architects Alison and Peter Smithson.The term gained wide currency when the British architectural historian Reyner Banham used it in the title of his 1966 book, The New Brutalism: Ethic or Aesthetic?, to characterise a somewhat recently established cluster of architectural approaches, particularly in Europe.

The best known proto-Brutalist architecture is the work of the Swiss architect Le Corbusier, in particular his 1952 Unité d'habitation in France and the 1953 Secretariat Building (Palace of Assembly) in Chandigarh, India.

Brutalist buildings are usually formed with repeated modular elements forming masses representing specific functional zones, distinctly articulated and grouped together into a unified whole. Concrete is used for its raw and unpretentious honesty, contrasting dramatically with the highly refined and ornamented buildings constructed in the elite Beaux-Arts style. 

Although the Brutalist movement was largely dead by the mid-1980s, having largely given way to Structural Expressionism and Deconstructivism, it has experienced an updating of sorts in recent years. Many of the rougher aspects of the style have been softened in newer buildings, with concrete façades often being sandblasted to create a stone-like surface, covered in stucco, or composed of patterned, pre-cast elements.   [ s. wikipedia: Brutalist Architechture   ]


In the recent years there are several tedencies and efforts to document, restore and preserve brutalist architecture. Groups, organisations,  publication etc. are common and numerous. On the other side several buildings have been demolished and disappeared or  are Under Immadiate Threat of Demolition. 

#SOSBrutalism is a growing database that currently contains over 1000 Brutalist buildings. But, more importantly, it is a platform for a large campaign to save our beloved concrete monsters. The buildings in the database marked red are in particular jeopardy. This is an unprecedented initiative: #SOSBrutalism is open to everyone who wants to join the campaign to save Brutalist buildings! It is a powerful tool that allows fans of Brutalism to communicate with one another across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and so on. You can follow our social media feeds below.

see also:  

for architectural photography I have a dedicated website:  EUPALINOS

WWII Flak Tower, Hamburg ( Germany )

WWII Flak Tower, Hamburg ( Germany )

WWII Flak Tower, Hamburg ( Germany )

BP Building, Hamburg City Nord ( demolished )

BP Building, Hamburg City Nord  ( demolised ). 

Architect KSP Kraemer

 Bauherr . . .BP Benzin und Petroleum AG
 Baujahr . . .1968 - 71

 Standort . . Überseering 2, Hamburg-Winterhude  
demolished 2013

Post Pyramide,  Hamburg City Nord ( to be demolished 2017/18 )

BUSS LOGISTIK, Hamburg Port ( demolished 2013 )

Gerd Buss Hamburg Port ca. 1970

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