Reyner Banham: The New Brutalism

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[Reyner Banham: The New Brutalism]



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This dissertation is based on the topic of “Reyner Banham: The New Brutalism”. The first chapter provides an introduction to the topic including the purpose and significance of the study. The second chapter presents a review of relevant literature, highlighting the previous research carried out in this field. The third chapter covers the methodology for this study, followed by the analysis of findings and discussion in the fourth chapter. The fifth chapter concludes the dissertation, providing implications and useful recommendations for further research.

Table of Contents





Background of the Study7

Problem Statement9

Purpose of the Study10

Objectives of the Study11

Significance of the Study11


Ideology of brutalist architecture14

The writings of the protagonists15

The creation of a historiography of the modern movement23

The official history of modern architecture24

The sense of criticism28

The Rise of criticism29

The basic objective of criticism30

Test as a technique of criticism30

The areas of criticism32

The contexts of criticism32

The limits of criticism33

Critical and creative work34

Theory and Criticism34

Pioneers: Positivists and antimaquinistas35

The Rise of Central European art theory36


Qualitative Research44

Data Collection44

Data Analysis46


Operational historiography of the modern movement: The methodological basis of the modern movement48

Existentialism, phenomenology, and Marxism iconology: The evolution of the studies iconological: Panofsky, Wittkower and Gombrich49

The contribution of structuralism53

In the era post-structuralist interpretations58




Future Research71



1. Introduction

Background of the Study

Brutalist architecture emerged between 1950 and 1970, inspired by Le Corbusiere's work and Mies van der Rohe. Essste style presents angled shapes, textures rough and rustic (Wolfe, 1981, 18). It is characterised by honesty constructive, showing all the ancillary facilities such as water pipes, etc.

Brutalist architecture is the product of the modern movement, whose heyday was between 1950 and 1970, and work was inspired by elements of the architects, Le Corbusier and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe.

The name originates from the French term béton brut, "raw concrete", a term used by Le Corbusier. It was the British critic Reyner Banham, who renamed it brutalism primitiveness.

The first reference to the New Brutalism was made by Alison Smithson in 1953 (Webster, 1997, 70). It appeared in her description of a project for a small house in Soho, the structure of which was to be 'exposed entirely, without interior finishes wherever practicable'. In the same year, Alison and Peter Smithson, together with the artist, Eduardo Paolozzi, and the photographer, Nigel Henderson, organised the exhibition 'Parallel of Life and Art', held at the London Institute for Contemporary Arts, and at the end of the year, at the AA-school for a couple of days. At that time, the foursome was part of the Independent Group, a loosely organised discussion-group of young ...
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