I originally began this project with the idea of documenting some of the many brutalist buildings around Bristol. This architectural movement flourished from the 1950’s to the 1970’s, and came out of the modernist movement of the early 20th century. Public opinion is quite varied when it comes to this style of building, with some people more inclined to dislike the concrete vastness. However, I think they have a certain charm about them, and contain a lot of history. Their main purpose was for the masses – social housing, offices, libraries. This meant that concrete was a suitable material, as it could be produced in large quantities and was relatively cheap.
I then thought of focusing my attention on one building in particular, instead of a series around Bristol: One Redcliff Street.
“You can’t see your reflection in a brutalist building, because its design was not about the individual, it was about the multitude. These schools, libraries, council flats, newspaper offices, shopping centres, hospitals were gifts from benign bureaucracies for society to share. Today’s glass buildings, full of mirrors (and smoke), are there to sate the narcissistic desires of the billions of individuals that the heaving mass has shattered into.”