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  #101  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2020, 10:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
^^^ Both comments above fail to make any sort of reasoned argument in defence of the brutalist style but simply engage in ad hominen attack. The brutalist style is widely viewed as dystopian (and in fact is almost exclusively used as the setting in dystopian film) and although it undeniably has it's admirers, it has met consistent criticism by the public as well as art and architecture critics. Worldwide, many brutalist structures, in most cases only 40-50 years old, have met their fate with the wrecking ball or are scheduled for demolition. The Birmingham Central Library and the Hurley Building in Boston are but two examples, in addition to dozens of brutalist tower blocks whose very designs were widely seen as encouraging crime, anti-social behaviour and social isolation . In the case of the Birmingham Library, the magnificent Victorian structure that was demolished for its construction was nothing short of cultural vandalism.

As I stated before, brutalism looks particularly foreboding and oppressive in a Canadian winter.

To me, the burned out hulk of the Greenfell Tower block, which perhaps unsurprisingly looked little worse than the structure before the fire, was emblematic of the complete and utter failure of the style and in a broader sense, the utter failure of authoritarian socialist societies.

A primary tenet of totalitarianism is intolerance of differing opinion. Suggesting that someone is a troll because they disagree with you shows a complete disrespect for open and honest public discourse. For this reason, amongst many others, the radical authoritarian left and it's desire to shut down all opinion that doesn't "tow the party line" represents the most dangerous threat to civil rights and freedoms in today's age. There are signs of improvement though with the post-Millenial generation, whatever they will eventually be named. Anecdotally speaking at least, those born starting around 2005 seem to have a much lower propensity for group-think and shaming.
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Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
And remember, no one is interested in your "feelings". Stop worrying about your "feelings" and how you are enjoying yourself or what ideas you "totally" had based on how popular they seem to be among your like-minded peers. Be objective and look outside your provincial Canadian bubbles.
Yes, people are victims of "group-think" if they try to appreciate a style of architecture that few people like, that is never built anymore. You hit the nail right on the head there.

You come in here and immediately attack the whole SSP community as "globalist authoritarian leftists" just because someone made a positive thread about a style of architecture and now you compare everyone to 1984 and say they lack the ability to think for themselves, but somehow it is everyone else who is intolerant of the opinions of others. You are getting angry at everyone for trying to be balanced and neutral but it is everyone else who is too caught up in their "feelings". Your posts are laughable. I say this as someone who is not a fan of brutalism.
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  #102  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2020, 10:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
^^^ Both comments above fail to make any sort of reasoned argument in defence of the brutalist style but simply engage in ad hominen attack.
Many other posts have explained it but you apparently missed them.

You keep shitting on our interest so please, start a thread of your favourite architectural style so the rest of us can have a chance to collectively shit on it and call you an asshole when you protest.
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  #103  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2020, 11:02 PM
Curmudgeon Curmudgeon is offline
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Originally Posted by MonkeyRonin View Post
Not brutalism:


Nor was it in an "authoritarian socialist society" nor did the fire have anything to do with either of the above, and everything to do with the flammable cladding. But I'm sure you knew that already and otherwise couldn't just miss an opportunity to be an asshole.
Yes, it most certainly is the brutalist style. If you are unfamiliar with the style why comment?

I think in order to understand my point you have to understand the meaning of the word emblematic. What a dunce.
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  #104  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2020, 11:27 PM
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Originally Posted by vid View Post
Many other posts have explained it but you apparently missed them.

You keep shitting on our interest so please, start a thread of your favourite architectural style so the rest of us can have a chance to collectively shit on it and call you an asshole when you protest.
It's an open forum. Your interest needs to be shit on, authoritarianism in all its forms needs to be challenged and discredited, and that includes its art and architecture.

"You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.".

"The fascists of the future will call themselves anti-fascists".

Both are often attributed to Winston Churchill but without real evidence.

This is a good short opinion piece:

https://www.avescope.com/lifestyle/b...e-le-corbusier
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  #105  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2020, 11:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Doady View Post
Yes, people are victims of "group-think" if they try to appreciate a style of architecture that few people like, that is never built anymore. You hit the nail right on the head there.

You come in here and immediately attack the whole SSP community as "globalist authoritarian leftists" just because someone made a positive thread about a style of architecture and now you compare everyone to 1984 and say they lack the ability to think for themselves, but somehow it is everyone else who is intolerant of the opinions of others. You are getting angry at everyone for trying to be balanced and neutral but it is everyone else who is too caught up in their "feelings". Your posts are laughable. I say this as someone who is not a fan of brutalism.
Your comment is total fabrication. I said many, not all. If you want laughable read your last post about how Trump is going to kill public transit ridership in the U.S. "for sure" by removing citizenship from those who have obtained it fraudulently. Ooookay..
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  #106  
Old Posted Mar 1, 2020, 11:53 PM
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Grenfell Tower was Brutalism when it was built, but it wasn't Brutalist when it burned down. Also, the fire had literally nothing to do with Brutalism. It was because the cladding was poorly designed and highly flammable. The cladding was there because people like you don't like Brutalism but also didn't want to actually invest in properly improving the building. And the poor maintenance of the building was a lasting result of British housing policies. Habitat 67 is also Brutalist but it hasn't burned down and you're not decrying how its emblamatic of this, that and the other bad thing.

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Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
It's an open forum. Your interest needs to be shit on, authoritarianism in all its forms needs to be challenged and discredited, and that includes its art and architecture.
Then I hope you are prepared to take the wrecking ball to neo-classicism, because that's the preferred architecture of Europe's right-wing authoritarians. It's also the preferred style of Stalin; Russia didn't start building Brutalist structures until after 1954 as a way to move away from Stalin's ideologies.

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Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
"You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.".

"The fascists of the future will call themselves anti-fascists".
Literally you. You are the anti-fascist enemy calling himself an anti-fascist.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
This is a good short opinion piece:

https://www.avescope.com/lifestyle/b...e-le-corbusier
Opinion ≠ fact. But if you're okay with them, here's a couple more: Classical architecture is consistent with authoritarian tastes, Fascist architecture,
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  #107  
Old Posted Mar 2, 2020, 12:48 AM
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^^^ your first sentence is non-sensical. Again, you are not understanding what I meant by emblematic. I can't help you with reading comprehension, you have to do that in your own.

Maybe consider leaving Thunder Bay to continue your studies? Give yourself a different and fresh perspective. Nourish your soul. Even close by are some amazing places to see. Have you been to New Orleans or Savannah? Santa Fe? San Francisco? (Although as a result of excessive gentrification, that city lacks the "life" that it once had) I am also very impressed with many of the colonial towns in Mexico. The aesthetics are so uplifting. Oaxaca City and Merida are two of my favourites but there are several I haven't seen. On the contrary, Brasilia is almost universally panned. Maybe you like brutalism because the coldness and oppressiveness are what you are familiar with? In other words, your comfort zone. Go to the light!

You must think I wrote that the building burned down because it was a brutalist design. I did not. What I did say is that many brutalist tower blocks have been demolished

You invented the assertion that neo-classical architecture is my favourite form. I've never even made a comment on it. Complete fabrication.
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  #108  
Old Posted Mar 2, 2020, 1:25 PM
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A small example in Vancouver is the post office on Pine Street. There aren't a lot of smaller public buildings built in this style in Canada, and the concrete decorations are unusual and interesting. The building is approachable and "human scaled" despite having lots of exposed concrete.


(from streetview)

Who planted that tree there though? Why do people in this country think that more trees are always better in urban settings?
Montreal has a number of concrete-heavy métro stations that are non-repulsive in this way.
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  #109  
Old Posted Mar 2, 2020, 2:26 PM
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If Brutalism is the stlye of left-wing authoritarian regimes, why was it popular in Texas?





Why was it big in Alberta?



Why did Stalin and Mao build stuff like this?



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  #110  
Old Posted Mar 2, 2020, 5:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Andy6 View Post
Is Scotia Square really brutalist rather than simply being a cheap, drab, boxy concrete building? Brutalism has to have a certain obnoxious grandeur. It has to make joyful (or demented) use of misshapen forms that kick classical ideas of proportion where it hurts. It has to make you think the architect must be a jerk, rather than merely listless and untalented.
I think it is a compromised and ultimately unsuccessful development but it is also underappreciated.

The Duke Street elevation is interesting and would have been impressive in its day. This is what the architects and builders thought of as the main facade, not Barrington. That was a big mistake.

Another little-known part of it is a courtyard that preserved a portion of the cobblestone surface of Buckingham Street.

There are a bunch of newer additions that were built in a bunch of different styles and don't look great. The complex has drifted away from the original design over time. The mall inside originally looked a bit different too and has since morphed into something very generic looking.
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  #111  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2020, 6:44 AM
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Main branch, Ottawa public Library:

http://urbsite.blogspot.com/2017/10/...ying-with.html
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  #112  
Old Posted Mar 5, 2020, 12:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Andy6 View Post
Brutalism has to have a certain obnoxious grandeur. It has to make joyful (or demented) use of misshapen forms that kick classical ideas of proportion where it hurts. It has to make you think the architect must be a jerk, rather than merely listless and untalented.
Beautifully said. I now adopt this perspective as my own lol. Still hate brutalism though. Jerks.
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Last edited by SignalHillHiker; Mar 5, 2020 at 12:32 PM.
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  #113  
Old Posted Mar 13, 2020, 2:09 PM
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  #114  
Old Posted Mar 13, 2020, 2:20 PM
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  #115  
Old Posted Mar 13, 2020, 3:12 PM
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I finally waded into this thread for the first time today. The incredible beauty of Canada's brutalist buildings lifted my spirits... thanks to everyone who posted pictures.

And hats off to vid on what is the best post on the topic that I've ever read on this forum. This could form the basis of a good newspaper or magazine article.

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The most important piece of context that people always miss when they criticize modern architecture, especially Brutalism and the International style, is that they are presenting a counter-point or alternative to the classical styles. In classical architecture, the goal was to design a building that fit classical ideas of aesthetic; for the shape and design of the building to not so much express what the building is for, but rather, for it to blend in quietly into a collective of similar buildings. Hierarchy would be represented (the more important the building, the more grand it was; it was not proper to violate that rule) but purpose was not reflected. When it came to materials, you used whatever you could for the structure—that was invisible. The face of the building was purely decoration. A lot of vernacular buildings in Europe that look stone are actually wood covered in plaster. The moldings aren't stone carvings; they're painted wood carvings. There is a lot of trickery, a lot of metaphor. To understand the stories that the architecture is telling you, you need to understand world and architectural history right back to ancient Greece. Why are classical columns designed the way they are? There are reasons for it! Do you know them? Probably not. But they look pretty!

Prettier than this, I assume you'll say:


189 Red River Rd., built 1989, architect Arthur Erickson


So, how modernism and Brutalism contrast to this is now obvious.

Classical ideas of aesthetic? No. Abandon aesthetic. We want modern: clean lines, no historical imagery. We've just invented a massive inventory of new building materials and techniques, let's not hide them! Let's express them. Buildings aren't decorated piles of stones with mysteries inside anymore. They're machines. Look at how they work! Look at what they're made of, what holds them up! That's the modernist philosophy. No more does every building look the same: not only does the shape of the building express what it does, the shapes that make up the building express what the parts of the building itself do within the whole. Brutalist buildings are probably the best example of this. Historical universities or schools were boxes, and the different activities going on inside were just stuffed into the box. In Brutalism, the library has a distinct shape from the labs which are distinct from the classrooms which are distinct from the cafeteria. All have a common theme, but just by looking at the building, you can determine that it's many parts coming together and forming a single entity. What is the building made of? Gone are the days when structural members were hidden inside brick and wood veneers. You can touch the supporting columns. You can see the imprint of the wooden slats used to hold the concrete in place while it dried. Different materials have different textures, and you can use them to make patterns and express ideas that way, instead of using ancient metaphors and allegories and carvings of acanthus leaves. When is the last time you saw an acanthus? Millions of them are carved into Canadian buildings for no reason other than "it has been done for 2,500 years".

But the most important reason architecture changed so sharply in the interwar period, and then modernism cemented itself in the postwar years? It looked toward the future. Back then, people were more optimistic about the future than we are today. They looked at the classical buildings we fawn over and many people saw dusty, obsolete trash. They knocked it all down with glee. At the time, every building looked that way, and everyone knew that those veneers were not genuine. The largest classical office building in my city is covered in terra cotta panels and carvings mass produced in Montreal intended to decorate the exteriors of middle class homes, with the exception of a carving bearing the name of the building none of them were intended for it; they depict monkeys and guava. It was an office building for a timber and ship building company. Under that is an ugly concrete and brick superstructure, nothing anyone would say is pleasing. It's facade is nothing more than a facade. In Brutalism, there is no facade; only structure.

This building:



The vertical columns between the windows are I-Beams welded to the facade so that the expressive elements of its architecture are literally the same thing that holds the building up. Not Brutalism, but the same idea: celebrating what makes the building a building, not celebrating centuries old tradition that means little to most people today. Classical proportions, International style was all about that: the building is a conformist box of a certain proportion is one feature International and Brutalism do not share (those concrete boxes that you think are Brutalist, like these two buildings, are actually International).

If you can explain all of the reasons classical architecture uses the proportions, materials, carvings, columns, layouts that it does, then go ahead, tell me how great it is. But you can't. Few can. You need to go to university to do that. The style "beaux arts" is literally named for L'Ecole des Beaux Arts, the school where they taught architecture in that specific style, inspired by a certain interpretation of existing classical styles.

I've always found classical architecture to be pretty, mainly because it's old and "intricate", but modern architecture, especially Brutalism, is wondrous, and unlike classical architecture, where the closer you look, the more you find unintended imperfections and flaws and lies (especially here in the north where most of the grand buildings were kits made in quarries near Toronto and shipped here to be assembled like Lego) but with modern architecture, the closer you look, the more obvious its philosophy is.
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  #116  
Old Posted Mar 13, 2020, 5:08 PM
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Queen Elizabeth Towers:



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  #117  
Old Posted Mar 13, 2020, 8:05 PM
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  #118  
Old Posted Mar 13, 2020, 8:15 PM
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  #119  
Old Posted Mar 13, 2020, 8:16 PM
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I have always thought that building looked pregnant.
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  #120  
Old Posted Mar 19, 2020, 9:44 PM
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