daily menu » rate the banner | guess the city | one on oneforums map | privacy policy | DMCA | news magazine | posting guidelines

Go Back   SkyscraperCity > European Forums > UK & Ireland Architecture Forums > Projects and Construction > Liverpool Metro Area

Liverpool Metro Area 'Scouse Scrapers for both sides of the Mersey



Global Announcement

As a general reminder, please respect others and respect copyrights. Go here to familiarize yourself with our posting policy.


Reply

 
Thread Tools
Old February 17th, 2007, 04:04 AM   #1
Villiers Terrace
I caught a falling star
 
Villiers Terrace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Venezia
Posts: 2,275
Likes (Received): 45

Brutalist architecture in Liverpool

This difficult mid to late 70's aesthetic trend, now known as Brutalism has occasionly thrown up the odd classic, the South Bank complex in London being one, the Barbican complex not half a mile from it, another.

The term Brutalism is derived fron the French for "raw" and refers primarily to the raw unfinessed concrete exterior of these buildings.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brutalist_architecture

Liverpool has, as far as I know, 3 or 4 remaining examples of what you could term Brutalist architcture:

1. The Sandcastle. 5/5 for the technical innovations and production standards of this pile, but I can only rate it a generous 2/5 for it's stumpy compromised appearance-it's a bit shit really.
2. Queen Elizabeth Law Courts. Fairly horrid, but not as horrid as it could've been. Joy! 2/5.
3. TGWU building. Identifying this as a 'minor' work of Brutalism would be an overstatement. Always was a ugly and unwelcome imposter to the fancy Georgian minuet next door. A pretty grim 1/5.
4. University Hospital. Not nice, grim even. 1/5.

Giving Liverpool a Brutalism score of 6/20.

Who dares challenge my judgement?
Villiers Terrace no está en línea   Reply With Quote

Sponsored Links
 
Old February 17th, 2007, 11:12 AM   #2
liverpolitan
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 6,416
Likes (Received): 1

I'm not sure any of them are really brutalist, not least because of the colours - I thought the brutalists said we had to like stained concrete or **** off?

RSA remains a great, in my opinion. I always used to like the TGWU building, I hope it is saved (seem to remember reading here that it might be replaced), although the last time I looked at it it was in very poor condition. I agree that the Law Courts are horrid, but I wonder if they will become better appreciated with age, and also I also wonder if PSDA (or Liverpool 1 as I think we're supposed to call it) will provide them with a better context.
liverpolitan no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 17th, 2007, 11:51 AM   #3
the golden vision
Registered User
 
the golden vision's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 6,458
Likes (Received): 807

Tend to agree Poli. Only the Royal could really be described as Brutalist. The RSA is definitely the best post-war building in the city in my opinionThe Crown Court is mediocre,both buildings have a militaristic look about them,the courts being almost on the spot of the original castle and that seems to have been the main infuence with the architect.Incidentally, i don't know whether people have noticed but the Malmaison has carried on theme of fortress type buildings, block like,with slit windows(similar to RSA)
the golden vision no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 17th, 2007, 11:59 AM   #4
Tony Sebo
BANNED
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Liverpool
Posts: 18,252
Likes (Received): 10

Like any architectural school (fad) Brutalism has provided loads of good buildings. Parts of the University campus has some good little examples and many individual buildings on the Royal Hospital site are great.


Where I would take you up on your challenge Villiers is in your notion that the Royal Hospital is a vile construct... most of the buildings are fine... it is the 60s' anti city/anti street mentality that dictated the overall design of the site that lets it down. RSA is a fine building.... we need to take off those 60s' induced earthquake trauma reaction to that era.
Tony Sebo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 17th, 2007, 12:34 PM   #5
Villiers Terrace
I caught a falling star
 
Villiers Terrace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Venezia
Posts: 2,275
Likes (Received): 45

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Sebo View Post
... we need to take off those 60s' induced earthquake trauma reaction to that era.
Ah, but it's hard Sebo. I'm an uber-modernist, who, if I'm honest, can't really respect modern architecture.
Villiers Terrace no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 17th, 2007, 12:48 PM   #6
Villiers Terrace
I caught a falling star
 
Villiers Terrace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Venezia
Posts: 2,275
Likes (Received): 45

Sorry, I need to qualify my last statement

Contemporary architcture.....I mean I love it, like, err..30 selected bits of it around the world, but let's face it, the reality of modern capitalism and it's effect on today's COMMERCIAL* construction production-values means we're hanging on to anyone who can do ANYTHING vaguely interesting with a very much reduced range of expressive tools compared to previous eras.

*Smaller scale private-realm's a whole happier packet of fish.

Last edited by Villiers Terrace; February 17th, 2007 at 12:53 PM.
Villiers Terrace no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 17th, 2007, 01:04 PM   #7
Awayo
Support the Squirrels
 
Awayo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 15,526
Likes (Received): 701

That chimney at the Royal, which looks like a Roman gladius, is well cool.
Awayo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 17th, 2007, 01:12 PM   #8
Villiers Terrace
I caught a falling star
 
Villiers Terrace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Venezia
Posts: 2,275
Likes (Received): 45

Quote:
Originally Posted by Awayo View Post
That chimney at the Royal, which looks like a Roman gladius, is well cool.
Oh aye it's on the Modernist World Tour that one lad.
Villiers Terrace no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 17th, 2007, 02:29 PM   #9
Pobbie
BANNED
 
Pobbie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Somewhere
Posts: 8,204
Likes (Received): 21

I'm not sure the RSA counts as brutalist architecture. It's rather unique in my opinion, and certainly different to the same old drab grey style of commieblocks.

Kingston House, now there's a brutalist atrocity if ever there was one. Thankfully its days are numbered.

Last edited by Pobbie; February 18th, 2007 at 06:17 AM. Reason: there's no such word as "styloe"
Pobbie no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 17th, 2007, 06:31 PM   #10
Tony Sebo
BANNED
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Liverpool
Posts: 18,252
Likes (Received): 10

I like the sword too. I suggested that it should be one of the structures lit during the second phase of the City of Light thing.... went down like a lead balloon.
Tony Sebo no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 17th, 2007, 07:33 PM   #11
Villiers Terrace
I caught a falling star
 
Villiers Terrace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Venezia
Posts: 2,275
Likes (Received): 45

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony Sebo View Post
I like the sword too. I suggested that it should be one of the structures lit during the second phase of the City of Light thing.... went down like a lead balloon.
The "sword"??
Tsk, tsk.

It's official title is the U.E.F.A.s Phallus Hammer Sceptre of Innocence. Not many people know that all the Champions League draws are televised from there and it's where Stringfellow has his porn stash.

'Hidden Liverpool' like.
Villiers Terrace no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 18th, 2007, 02:54 AM   #12
Martin S
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 7,731
Likes (Received): 627

I wouldn't describe the RSA, QEII law courts or TGWU building as brutalist. They may use exposed concrete but in each case it is coloured and / or given a textured finish to soften its appearance.

The main idea of brutalism was to expose the raw concrete of a buildings structure - often to the extent of retaining the holes where ties held the formwork together.

This style was very much in vogue for university buildings as students are meant to be more intellectual and appreciate the honesty of these buildings. However, the discoloration that concrete is prone to in our damp and polluted environment soon meant that the attraction wore off.

However where exposed concrete has been used inside, I think it can look really good - for example in the FACT centre. I can't think of any other examples at the moment though.
__________________
Martin S no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 18th, 2007, 11:12 AM   #13
Villiers Terrace
I caught a falling star
 
Villiers Terrace's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Venezia
Posts: 2,275
Likes (Received): 45

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin S View Post
I wouldn't describe the RSA, QEII law courts or TGWU building as brutalist. They may use exposed concrete but in each case it is coloured and / or given a textured finish to soften its appearance.

The main idea of brutalism was to expose the raw concrete of a buildings structure - often to the extent of retaining the holes where ties held the formwork together.

This style was very much in vogue for university buildings as students are meant to be more intellectual and appreciate the honesty of these buildings. However, the discoloration that concrete is prone to in our damp and polluted environment soon meant that the attraction wore off.

However where exposed concrete has been used inside, I think it can look really good - for example in the FACT centre. I can't think of any other examples at the moment though.
Maybe you can call them mini-Brutalist relateds. The TGWU at least features the geometric styling of it's mini-towers typical of Brutalism.

I didn't think textured concrete was outside the Brutalist realm necessarily.

The ground-floor of the Metropolitan where the cafe is/was features a fair amouut of semi-raw concrete, also the inside of the RCA in london displays lot of the typical wood inprint patterning due to the troughs in which the wet cement was left to dry, which I believe is one of Brutalism's defining signatures.
Villiers Terrace no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 18th, 2007, 07:19 PM   #14
UrbaniseD
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 912
Likes (Received): 0

People make the mistake of thinking that the term "brutalism" refers to a building having a brutal/harsh/ugly appearance. It doesn't.

The term brutalism is derived from the French expression, "breton brut", which literally means "raw concrete".

Therefore, the RSA and QEII courts can be considered brutal irrespective of whether the concrete is 'coloured'. There is no rule of brutalism which states that the concrete must be a certain colour.

Also, I think it is wrong for people to say that the concrete on the RSA for example has been 'coloured'. Its colour is in fact related to the type of sand and aggregate used in the production of the concrete panels. Some concrete for example has more of a seaside appearance as pebble type aggregate is used.
UrbaniseD no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 18th, 2007, 11:36 PM   #15
Bachy Soletanche
Registered User
 
Bachy Soletanche's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 14,913
Likes (Received): 1496

1. The Sandcastle.

3/5 Terrible at ground level especially for pedestrians, a common brutalist fault, but get's a high score from me for its size and the cubist piss take of the Liver building. Dunno what it's like inside.

2. Queen Elizabeth Law Courts.

3.5/5 Beautiful Choclolate Concreate colour with nice detailing, again terrible building to walk around, but a good example. this may suprise you, but I've never been in that one either.

3. TGWU building.
4/5 Wonderfully matching the building around it, while maintaining it's own period style. knocking it down would be a terrible mistake

4. University Hospital.

1.5/5 Hideous mismash of not quite matching styles, the "back" is just one, and looks better. The sword rules, with fists of iron though.


edited add picture of the "back" of the Royal, I think that looks okey to be honest:
__________________
Seek roses in December, ice in June; Hope constancy in wind, or corn in chaff;
Believe a woman or an epitaph, or any other thing that's false, before You trust in critics.

Last edited by Bachy Soletanche; February 18th, 2007 at 11:42 PM.
Bachy Soletanche no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 18th, 2007, 11:45 PM   #16
JUXTAPOL
800th birthday in 2007
 
JUXTAPOL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Liverpool
Posts: 4,194
Likes (Received): 5

Sandcastle. Agree Shit at ground level, but that could easily be cured with imagination. Stunning above ground level in sunlight.



QE2 Law Courts, will look better with developments surrounding it, i quite like the entrance part, which i don't have a photo.



TGWU, unfairly compared to it's gracefull, clasically styled neighbours.


Last edited by JUXTAPOL; February 18th, 2007 at 11:52 PM.
JUXTAPOL no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 18th, 2007, 11:46 PM   #17
Bachy Soletanche
Registered User
 
Bachy Soletanche's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 14,913
Likes (Received): 1496

There's a lot more than that 5, Wilson Prichard Building possibly?

And how can you forget:
__________________
Seek roses in December, ice in June; Hope constancy in wind, or corn in chaff;
Believe a woman or an epitaph, or any other thing that's false, before You trust in critics.
Bachy Soletanche no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 19th, 2007, 03:58 AM   #18
Pobbie
BANNED
 
Pobbie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Somewhere
Posts: 8,204
Likes (Received): 21

Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbaniseD View Post
People make the mistake of thinking that the term "brutalism" refers to a building having a brutal/harsh/ugly appearance. It doesn't.

The term brutalism is derived from the French expression, "breton brut", which literally means "raw concrete".

Therefore, the RSA and QEII courts can be considered brutal irrespective of whether the concrete is 'coloured'. There is no rule of brutalism which states that the concrete must be a certain colour.

Also, I think it is wrong for people to say that the concrete on the RSA for example has been 'coloured'. Its colour is in fact related to the type of sand and aggregate used in the production of the concrete panels. Some concrete for example has more of a seaside appearance as pebble type aggregate is used.
Point taken. Nevertheless, I still wouldn't refer to the RSA as "brutalist" given that I don't actually find it harsh and raw like most seem to. In a way, it reminds me of a Sumerian ziggurat.
Pobbie no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 19th, 2007, 10:40 AM   #19
Scarecrow
Sir Digby Chicken Caesar
 
Scarecrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Outside Society
Posts: 8,776
Likes (Received): 1043

how about the Triad in Bootle, or the old St Johns House?
__________________
COUNTY ROAD TAKE ME HOME TO THE PLACE I BELONG
Scarecrow no está en línea   Reply With Quote
Old February 19th, 2007, 11:56 AM   #20
T0M
Scousish
 
T0M's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Liverpool
Posts: 6,794
Likes (Received): 0

She's a stunner in the right light...

T0M no está en línea   Reply With Quote


Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT +2. The time now is 09:04 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Feedback Buttons provided by Advanced Post Thanks / Like v3.2.5 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2014 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.

SkyscraperCity ☆ In Urbanity We trust ☆ about us | privacy policy | DMCA policy

Hosted by Blacksun, dedicated to this site too!
Forum server management by DaiTengu