More brutalism in sclerotic thinking than architecture, at least in Nawbony.


In the interest of fairness, and coming a week after the latest New Albany historic homes tour (which we very much enjoyed), here’s a look at recognition for brutalist architecture in the UK.

And what is brutalist architecture?

It’s largely what we skipped over in New Albany. When we demolished buildings here, more often than not we designed vacant lots to take their place, and did not even bother with rebuilding. Of course, there are exceptions. I imagine the Riverview Towers building might qualify as brutalist, although it’s a bit dull and Bulgarian to fit, at least in my opinion. Bluegill, if you’re reading, please weigh in.

Perhaps we can give protection to brutalist vacant lots? Especially the unused ones with asphalt.

UK’s brutalist architecture celebrated as four postwar buildings get listed status; Bunker and electricity substation are among structures awarded Grade II and Grade II* protection, by Peter Walker (The Guardian)

Given that diehard critics of postwar architecture already liken its creations to bunkers, warehouses and electricity substations, they could be forgiven for feeling simultaneously vindicated and horrified at the news that the government has now granted protected listings to precisely such structures.

They are among four constructions built between the 1950s and 1980s – the last is a slightly less forbidding Mies van der Rohe-inspired steel and glass home – given Grade II or II* status on Friday by the government.

The news coincides with Brutal and Beautiful, a new exhibition by English Heritage, which advised on the listings, examining the nation’s attitude to our recent architectural past …