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Old July 21st, 2010, 12:56 PM   #621
london-b
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I think it looks better than the previous building and done so without the need for a massive glass wall. An example to many other projects.
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Old August 5th, 2010, 06:50 PM   #622
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DarJoLe View Post
This has been nominated for entry into this year's Carbuncle Cup.

http://www.bdonline.co.uk/news/uk/no...ze=10#comments

Thankfully didn't make it to the shortlist.

It's odd that the general public seems convinced that the facade is reconstituted stone. It isn't. It's entirely hand carved (the Corinthian capitals took 6 weeks each).
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Old August 13th, 2010, 12:17 AM   #623
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It's not how I would have done it, and Terry is certainly no genius, but I still genuinely believe this building to be rather good, based on its own merit. The ordered classicism may be wrong for the area, but I think it actually sits rather well with its neighbours for precisely that reason. Someone commented earlier that it is fortress-like and overbearing, and that is exactly why I feel it actually fits rather well! That ghastly concrete YMCA is fortress like and overbearing, too. Sure, there is no continuity in terms of architectural detail, but in terms of mood invoked (unless you are a purist), then they actually complement well. Sure, proportions are off quite badly, but that's a good thing: the eye's centre is low, the whole structure seems centred lower than the more traditional classical drawing of the eyes upward. I'm not a fan of all of Terry's work (see Maggie Thatcher Hospital), but this is actually fine.

If I had been doing it, I would have been more inclined to ape the eclectic, Victorian Neo-Gothic, Red brick with cream accents, etc. Good quality materials, naturally. I'd also have tried to make it taller. In short, I would have tried to make more of a statement with it. Still, a great building overall.

I've stuck through all 32 pages of this thread, and one fundamental irony has always stayed with me: That most of the complaints leveled at this building were also leveled at The Houses of Parliament when it was being built. Pugin laid into Barry with a real venom, shouting that he had draped Gothic frills onto a classical shell with classical proportions. He was right. Gothic hangs on eccentricity, eclecticism and decoration, whereas classicism is order, symmetry, and sparsity. And yet, he was also wrong. The HoP is a building of genius. Barry knew what he was doing.

This building is not genius, not by a long chalk. But it's a lovely addition to a run-down area, and I think the comparison to the Barry-Pugin debate is not unwarranted.
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Old November 8th, 2011, 07:02 PM   #624
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Terry also designed Brentwood cathedral in my home town, Brentwood. I have always thought it looked very compromised in the look it was trying to achieve, too much on a too small scale and just half hearted. The yellow brick section above looks respectable but the base just fails.

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Old November 8th, 2011, 08:58 PM   #625
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Classical architects have their heart in the right place but always seem to miss the point. Scale is often a problem as are their details which sometimes just look misguided and aesthetically incorrect.
Tottenham Court Road is by no means the best classical building I have seen but it's a welcome change from the norm which is refreshing and different for London.
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Old November 9th, 2011, 12:17 AM   #626
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I walk up Tottenham Court Road on the way to work and this building truly is a breath of fresh air. It WORKS.
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Old June 15th, 2012, 06:00 PM   #627
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I prefer Classical to modern any day.
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Old June 20th, 2012, 02:41 PM   #628
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I took this pic today, I don't think it looks particuarly good. There's something about those brown spandrels that looks like someone put a classical facde on top of a 1970's modernist facade. I also dislike how the grooves in the stone stop halfway up, in general the detailing on this is somewhat lacking.

Not sure why people are talking negatively about this building, not enough stone buildings are being constructed in London, just look at the other buildings surrounding this new one, they are all hideous, that theatre needs destroying, and that skyscraper to the left arghhh!
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Old June 21st, 2012, 03:52 PM   #629
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The Theatre is Portland Stone, it just needs a clean.
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Old August 21st, 2012, 07:00 PM   #630
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Quote:
Originally Posted by valdrada View Post
Thankfully didn't make it to the shortlist.

It's odd that the general public seems convinced that the facade is reconstituted stone. It isn't. It's entirely hand carved (the Corinthian capitals took 6 weeks each).
why don't use CNC carving machines to carve stones?

One criticism of the modernist elite (apart from the flawed "Zeitgeist" argument, which is used to hide an aesthetic preference) is that nowadays there's not enough skilled craftmanship to build like that. CNC machines could be use to reduce costs and faster delivery of sculpted stones like those capitals. They can be hand finished too, to provide a more artistic touch to them (with this process the artistic part would be transferred to the computer design, tough)

Last edited by newen; August 21st, 2012 at 07:08 PM.
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Old August 23rd, 2012, 03:54 AM   #631
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newen

why don't use CNC carving machines to carve stones?

One criticism of the modernist elite (apart from the flawed "Zeitgeist" argument, which is used to hide an aesthetic preference) is that nowadays there's not enough skilled craftmanship to build like that. CNC machines could be use to reduce costs and faster delivery of sculpted stones like those capitals. They can be hand finished too, to provide a more artistic touch to them (with this process the artistic part would be transferred to the computer design, tough)
CNC was looked in to. The trouble was (and probably still is) many fold;

- INFORMATION, the types of architects that can design Corinthian capitals don't model the designs (yes, largely because traditionally its not the form of information required by the mason trade - this could change, but what would it take?)
- PROCESS, CNC on stone seemed to be largely done via routing; therefore the design/result would be limited to cuts from a single direction. If you were to then argue that the finesse of a piece be added manually by a mason ... this would only add cost (see below).
- PROCESS, if a 3D CNC process was used in order to create moulds, 3 moulds would have been required across just 8-10 capitals (I forget how many there were). The capitals at either end of the facade were mirrored designs but also different from those in between. The issue here was the cost of each mould vs how many times it would be used in order to make it an efficient process, plus you would push risk to the end of the process (ie, you only know the result is bad right at the end). Hand carving allows for continual assessment.
- ECONOMY, CNC is not cheap, personally I think it's role in construction is delivery on repetitive / iterative systems and components, and even then there are limitations to the materials that the economic sense is applicable to.
- ECONOMY, this sort of masonry is a dying trade. Should it not be supported / rejoiced? The idea that the tradesmen should just add to the CNC pieces seems to suggest that neither system or trade is fulfilling its role ... and leads to a "build in truth" issue. In reality, large machinery is already used to create the manageable blocks that masons carve.
- SPEED, in this particular scheme the speed of milling the capitals wasn't critical enough to be a leading item in construction / programme decisions. (it was known early on that carving would take time, and therefore talking to the masons started earlier).
- DESIGN LOGIC, perhaps roman capitals are designed with masons in mind. Their design might not be efficient use of a CNC process. Capitals designed with CNC in mind ... would look different wouldn't they?

The above items probably apply to a lot of schemes where the assumed solution is "CNC it".

Not sure I understood your zeitgeist and "modernist elite" comments...

Last edited by valdrada; August 23rd, 2012 at 04:00 AM.
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Old February 16th, 2014, 08:41 PM   #632
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heh, i was watching this programme and then googled "quinlan terry soho" and got this thread. the creators of this programme seem fairly certain on their opinion of the Terry approach to architecture http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode...the_Bulldozer/
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