A segregation of zones (including the separation of spaces for living, working, recreation and circulation)
Use of modern building techniques used to produce high density blocks
Wide distances between blocks to allow maximum exposure of most block to sunlight
Dwellings close to work
Small Print: “The re-use of past styles of building for new structures in historic areas under the pretext of assthetics [sic] has disastrous consequences. The continuance or the introduction of such habits in any form should not be tolerated.”
The housing estate had been built using Modernist principles of rational design in order to fulfil social ideals and its decline in to crime and decay seemed symbolic of the failure of such design.
Charles Jencks (born 1939) In seeking a Universal solution to the problems of social housing – in the standardised geometric language of uniform components and the modernist resistance to explicit ‘content’ – Jencks felt Modern Architecture was unable to communicate effectively to a diverse range of users. Further to this diagnosis Jencks felt that Modern Architecture seemed to be restricted by a poor set of social and economic relationships between Architects and the users of the buildings. ‘Top-down’ the designer’s ‘vision’ was generated almost autonomously rather than being based upon the needs of the people it was intended to serve.
Robert Venturi, Denise Scott Brown and Steven Izenour (1972/1977)Learning from Las Vegas
Another story? “ The environment built before 1979 , often being bulldozed and dynamited, seemed so much more futuristic than the houses and interminable shopping malls being built in front of me. Perhaps because of that, concrete walkways and windswept precincts have always seemed to me to have a sharp poignancy” (Hatherly 2008, p.8)
Past relations - Vorticism David Bomberg (1914) Mudbath
Brutalism Alison and Peter Smithson (1972) Robin Hood Gardens
“ The 1950s-70s’ ‘Cities in the Sky’ are [...] in the first decade of the 21 st century, along with the NHS, the most persistent remnant of British Socialism. A constant danger is that the Aesthetic Argument can be used as a smokescreen for the political [...] coucil tennants have shown a tendency to vote down the incessant ballots imploring them to sell up. Far be it from us to suggest that this might actually be because they actually like the views [...] the remants of Brutalism are in popular imagination precisely what the old slums always were – places where strange people do strange things, and from whence revolt and resistance might just emerge.” (Hatherley 2008, p. 42)
Was there an explosion in Art like that of Architecture?