New York Architecture Images- Search by style


Approximate Dates 1950 to 1985
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020 Fashion Institute of Technology 035 Waterside 003-Westyard Distribution Center 018 Bobst Library 033 Catholic Center at New York Uni'.
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021 4 NEW YORK PLAZA 030 Met Life Building 020 NYC Police Headquarters 059-Whitney Museum of American Art 097-Ruppert Towers
111- Manhattan Church of Christ 112- Group Residence for Young Adults
Style Definition
Although the word Brutalism comes from the French word for rough concrete (beton brut), a sense of brutality is also suggested by this style. Brutalist structures are heavy and unrefined with coarsely molded surfaces, usually exposed concrete. Their highly sculptural shapes tend to be crude and blocky, often colliding with one another.

The line between brutalism and ordinary modernism is not always clear since concrete buildings are so common and run the entire spectrum of modern styles. Designs which embrace the roughness of concrete or the heavy simplicity of its natural forms are considered brutalist. Other materials including brick and glass can be used in brutalism if they contribute to a block-like effect similar the the strongly articulated concrete forms of early brutalism.

The origin of Brutalism is generally ascribed to the architect Le Corbusier, who experimented widely with concrete designs and whose massive plans for highrise block housing were very influential. American architect Paul Rudolph designed some of the most famous brutalist buildings, some of which are often used to define the style. Brutalism's greatest popularizer is the firm John Portman & Associates which designed several enormous hotels and office clusters known for their spectacular spatial effects.