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"Brutalism" in Fort Worth?


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#1 johnfwd

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Posted 24 May 2016 - 06:59 AM

This CNN website article explores the "brutalism" style of architecture utilized in post-World War II Europe and elsewhere.  It has me wondering if any of our Fort Worth buildings exhibit this style.

 

http://www.cnn.com/2...orms/index.html



#2 Austin55

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Posted 24 May 2016 - 08:12 AM

We've definitely got some! This should be a fun discussion. 

 

I think the Kahn building at the Kimball is the "best" example, it's a bit unusual that a brutalist building is so well loved, usually they are highly disliked. 

 

09120b22b087fd16d2c7a47b098a2930.jpg

 

Brutalism is definitely fascinating, it's so inhumane feeling at times and can be awfully hideous, but sometimes it works and works very well. 



#3 JBB

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Posted 24 May 2016 - 09:27 AM

I've often heard of City Hall and Burnett Plaza being referred to as Brutalist. You might make a case that the convention center arena and the new TCC campus are both examples as well.

#4 Austin55

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Posted 24 May 2016 - 01:54 PM

City Hall is very brutalist, greata example of the style.

 

How about this atrocious thing?

 



#5 John T Roberts

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Posted 24 May 2016 - 02:08 PM

JBB, I have heard all of those buildings called "Brutalist".  I would tend to agree except for the TCC Trinity River East Campus.  The campus is a mixed bag.  From the street, they tend to be brutalist,  but from the plaza they are pedestrian friendly.  However, sunken plazas are not particularly inviting.



#6 Austin55

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Posted 24 May 2016 - 06:00 PM

The Water Gardens and Heritage plaza are both great examples of landscape architecture brutalism. Heritage especially feels brutalist. Can't wait for it to open again.



#7 Austin55

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Posted 25 May 2016 - 07:10 AM

Staircase in Suanders Park

 

sXJxCh4.jpg

 

Hilton Annex

 

T3xb7tN.jpg



#8 hannerhan

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Posted 25 May 2016 - 10:29 AM

Paul Rudolph did the City Center buildings and also the home of Sid and Anne Bass in Westover Hills.  City Center is glass so people don't think Brutalism when they see it, but it should be included.  The Bass house is a no brainer.



#9 John T Roberts

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Posted 25 May 2016 - 10:41 AM

City Center has always been considered as Brutalism, it just hasn't been brought up in this thread.   Most people cannot really see the home because of the growth of trees around it.  I remember when that house was built.



#10 RD Milhollin

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Posted 25 May 2016 - 10:53 AM

That staircase needs something to cap the central column; a stone globe, a light standard, something...



#11 Austin55

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Posted 25 May 2016 - 07:32 PM

The City Center towers seem really underlooked to me, compared to most of Rudolph's work. A lot of the attention seems to be on his other works. Most of his designs were much more harsh than the City Center ended up being though, which is fine by me. The only work I of his I'd rather have had is the Lippo Center. I can appreciate a lot of his other work, but I'm glad it's elsewhere. 



#12 John T Roberts

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Posted 25 May 2016 - 08:04 PM

Austin, there is one more Paul Rudolph work here.  It's at TCU and it is the Richardson Physical Sciences Building.

srscience.jpg



#13 johnfwd

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Posted 27 May 2016 - 06:50 AM

In the CNN article by Thomas Page (Post #1), Brutalism is defined as "Breton brut, raw, unfinished concrete set in bold, geometric form.  Form followed function and the result was monolithic, imposing, and disruptive."

 

Viewing some of the local architecture posted here, I guess one can opine that some of it adheres to the above definition.  But I think maybe way back when raw concrete went into production, the transition must have been disruptive to those who were comforted by the familiar craftsmanship of buildings constructed of wood and other less bland-looking materials.

 

Who knows but in the future new forms of building materials (via 3d printing or even nanotech?) may replace today's concrete-steel-glass combination resulting in new designs that will be either disruptive or inviting to the eye, depending on one's tastes.



#14 Austin55

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Posted 27 May 2016 - 02:39 PM

The recently demolished Ciera bank was another good example. Google Streetview screenshot,

 

ciera_zpsxh0xntsj.png



#15 Askelon

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Posted 19 February 2017 - 12:44 PM

Sorry, but I always considered City Hall to be "brutal" to gaze upon. Looked like somebody took the top two floors of Boston City Hall, compressed the overhangs into a square, and set it on the ground. I enjoy the textures and functionality of Brutalism ( in their place,) but in comparison to the Art Deco Municipal City Courts next door and Courthouse I always though Fort Worth deserved better. Just a personal opinion, no offence meant.  


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#16 John T Roberts

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Posted 19 February 2017 - 01:04 PM

The Fort Worth City Hall leaves a lot to be desired.  It is terribly inefficient, built on a super block, and it does have some characteristics of the Boston City Hall.  The city has explored getting rid of it, but for the time being, has decided to stay put.



#17 austlar1

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Posted 19 February 2017 - 04:59 PM

Here is a link to lots of pics of real brutalist architecture-  https://www.google.c...4k1.izuFfkYr1mg



#18 Askelon

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Posted 25 February 2017 - 11:08 PM

 I explored the link and decided that 

   1. I still do not care for Brutalism. Some caveats to this statement- I do seem to like it at a smaller scale, and in contrast to a dissimular texture, ie, houses of glass and horizontal/ vertical Brutalistic elements ( cantilever living areas inside or out, vertical accent walls.) And I still like the Guggenheim Museum in form, if not in person ( at least the path is downhill, and it does make the art pop.)

   2. I found a page in 99%invisible.org called " The Architecture of Evil". It examines the use of brutalistic structure in film to represent evil ( such as Blade Runner, Robocop,Total Recall.)

  3. Some communities are trying to preserve public use Brutalistic building (particularly in Europe,) so SOMEBODY likes it. Given that, I guess some of it should be preserved in the interest of future preservationists. Maybe somebody in 2050 will say" Why did they tear that down? They don't build them like that anymore!"

 4.Thanx for the link-interesting.


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#19 Doohickie

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Posted 27 February 2017 - 09:42 AM

As far as I'm concerned, it might was well be called Awfulism.


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#20 Jeriat

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Posted 27 February 2017 - 06:35 PM

As far as I'm concerned, it might was well be called Awfulism.

 

It's the only form of architecture I have hate for. It just feels... lazy to me. 

And sure, you could say the same about most modern glass boxes out there, but at the very least, there's a shine and reflection to them. Brutalist buildings (ESPECIALLY certain Brutalist skyscrapers) are just giant concrete monoliths sticking out of the ground. 


7fwPZnE.png

 

8643298391_d47584a085_b.jpg


#21 John T Roberts

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Posted 27 February 2017 - 09:06 PM

Austin, I think your description of the Kimbell Art Museum is very good.  It is one example where the style works very well.  The Kimbell is actually my favorite building in the entire city.  It works so well on so many different levels.



#22 Askelon

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Posted 28 February 2017 - 07:50 PM

   I guess technically the Kimball is Brutalistic. For myself though, it doesn't have the feel that I expect from typical Brutalistic architecture ( and we acknowledge the "Form and Fuctionality" interpretation of architecture-but isn't all of that personally filtered through how we "feel" about this building or that ?) The admittance of natural light from the high vaulted ceiling provides a light, airy atmosphere within which dispels the typical heaviness I associate with Brutalism. The use of natural elements within ( wood, natural surface travertine,) and the thinness of the movable wall partitions help immensely to eliminate the "Wow, I'm looking at a big, thick concrete slab" experience. I bow to the Forum's judgement that it is Brutalism- but it sure doesn't "feel" like it.


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#23 Volare

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Posted 28 February 2017 - 09:18 PM

I concur. Travertine >> cheap horrible concrete. (Although the concrete in the Piano pavilion is incredible to touch.)






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