In honor of World Architecture Day, I wanted to share a few images from the most controversial of Architectural Styles, Brutalism. More than any other, these buildings are being torn down only to be replaced by the banal developments that make every city look the same. If we can't find a way to repurpose these buildings in meaningful ways, we may very well wipe an extremely important and influential style from our cities and architectural history.
Just as we have codified the love and protected the modernist glass and steel skyscrapers of Mies, we must do the same with the buildings of Corbusier, Breuer, Rudolph, and Bunshaft. They face the same issues. They are old buildings and behave like them. But with loving restoration and care, they can survive and be updated to live further into the future. Projects like the recently completed Watergate Hotel renovation bring hope to those among us who find a soft spot in our heart for Brutalist Masterpieces. On the opposite side of the coin, we have already lost buildings like the Third Church of Christ Scientist that could have been repurposed to serve a greater function than their original intention.These buildings require the same effort to rehabilitate that the original architects showed in restraining themselves in their conception. It is no task for mediocre architects or developers. It requires vision and passion to restore the masterpieces of their age.
I only hope through these photos to share the beauty I see in these buildings so that we can help protect the great buildings into the future.