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A Brief History of Brutalism at the Barbican

United Kingdom Architecture News - Jan 21, 2021 - 16:57   3058 views

A Brief History of Brutalism at the Barbican

Developed in association with Barbican, this short course provides an engaging and critical introduction to Brutalist architecture through the iconic and groundbreaking design of the Barbican. Learn about the origins of the style, its unique relationship with Britain and its enduring impact on architecture and design.

Taught online via live Zoom sessions, the course will spread over six seminars. This course will be delivered online, and will involve tutor presentations and class discussion using Zoom.

The course will be led by Jon Astbury, Assistant Curator, Architecture & Design, Barbican Art Gallery.

Who is the course for?

The course is ideal for anyone looking to gain more knowledge in architecture and design. No previous knowledge is required.

Course Dates & Times

Wednesday evenings on 27 January, 3, 10, 17, 24 February and 3 March 2021
7-8.30pm, GMT(UTC+/-0); 17 Feb 7-9pm, GMT(UTC+/-0)

What can I expect?

You can expect to:

- Gain an understanding of Brutalism and its place within 20th century architecture, from its origins as a design movement to a popular and widespread style.

- Understand the movement’s rise, fall and recent resurgence.

- Comprehend the features and characteristics of the Brutalist movement through a focus on the Barbican and the neighbouring Golden Lane Estate.

- Learn the basics of Brutalist architecture from original architectural plans and sketches.

- Experience Brutalism’s connection to other artforms and creative fields from cinema to sculpture.

- Understand the long relationship between Brutalism, Britain and social housing.

Learn and discuss with one of the Barbican Centre’s artform curators how they use the Barbican’s architecture to produce exhibitions, shows and events – both curating their own architecture and producing artworks within an artwork.

In week 4 we will be joined by guest speakers for a Q&A session.

Course Fee



- For everyone aged 18+

- No prior knowledge or training in architecture or design is necessary. Those new to the subject are encouraged.

- Applicants must have sufficient English language skills to cope with course demands.

Book Now

The deadline for bookings is 9am on 25 January 2021.

Top image: Max Colson

> via Guildhall School of Music & Drama