BRUTALIST BUILDINGS UNDER ATTACK. I posted here three years ago about how two of Paul Rudolph’s Brutalist buildings had been threatened with demolition. The attacks on Rudolph’s buildings have continued. This article from March of this year on the Atlantic blog by Alison Arieff about “Paul Rudolph and the Challenge of Preserving Modern Architecture” describes Rudolph, who served as Dean of the Yale School of Architecture, as “one of the harder hit modernists” and says: “More than perhaps any of his peers, Rudolph’s buildings are either under threat or have already been destroyed.” You will have seen a number of Brutalist buildings. This wikipedia article describes Brutalist architecture as “architecture which flourished from the 1950s to the mid 1970s, spawned from the modernist architectural movement. Examples are typically very linear, fortresslike and blockish, often with a predominance of concrete construction. Initially the style came about for government buildings, low-rent housing and shopping centers in order to create functional structures at a low cost.” The article has a picture of an example of the style— the Boston City Hall (1969)—and calls attention to certain Brutalist features: “top-heavy massing, the use of slender base supports, and the sculptural use of raw concrete.” It is strange to me that buildings that were considered to be representative of prestigious modern architecture when I was young are now so out of fashion.

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