Brutalist architecture emerged during the 1950s in the United Kingdom, among the reconstruction projects of the post-war era.

Brutalist buildings are characterised by minimalist constructions that showcase the bare building materials and structural elements over decorative design.The style commonly makes use of exposed, unpainted concrete or brick, angular geometric shapes and a predominantly monochrome colour palette; other materials, such as steel, timber, and glass, are also featured.

Descending from the modernist movement, brutalism is said to be a reaction against the nostalgia of architecture .Derived from the Swedish phrase nybrutalism, the term “new brutalism” was first used by British architects Alison and Peter Smithson for their pioneering approach to design.

The style was further popularised in a 1955 The style, as developed by architects such as the Smithsons, and Hungarian-born Ernő Goldfinger, was partly foreshadowed by the modernist work of other architects such as French-Swiss Le Corbusier, Estonian-American Louis Kahn, German-American Mies van der Rohe, and Finnish Alvar Aalto.

In the United Kingdom, brutalism was featured in the design of utilitarian, low-cost social housing influenced by socialist principles and soon spread to other regions around the world, most notably Eastern Europe.

Brutalist designs became most commonly used in the design of institutional buildings, such as provincial legislatures, public works projects, universities, libraries, courts, and city halls. The popularity of the movement began to decline in the late 1970s, with some associating the style with urban decay and totalitarianism.

Brutalism’s popularity in socialist and communist nations owed to traditional styles being associated with bourgeoisie, whereas concrete emphasized equality.


Destination – Europe