The Twentieth Century Society

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Scottish Brutalism: Project Update from Ross Brown


Over the past couple of months, I have published several building studies in the Scottish Brutalism Archive. Of particular note are the three halls of residence Walter Neil Wilson Ramsay designed for the University of Glasgow during the 1960s & 1970s.

Ramsay developed a distinctive Brutalist architectural expression of exposed concrete frame and projecting brickwork infill at Queen Margaret Hall – which can only now be seen at the sole surviving escape stair of the Dalrymple Hall Annex.

Thank you to those of you who attended my short talk at the opening on Docomomo Scotland’s photographic exhibition at the Glasgow City Heritage Trust. I have since completed and published the building study of T.P. Bennett & Son’s British Linen Bank, which I touched upon then. I believe this case study is illustrative of the various problems many post-war office buildings now face, including not least Michael Laird & Partners’ Argyle House in Edinburgh.

I have also begun the process of recording the locations of buildings I have not yet published in the Archive on the Map. This resource will hopefully inform prospective architectural tours of Brutalism across west-central Scotland, as well as demonstrating the breadth of Brutalist architecture in the region. I would be happy to receive recommendations of further locations to include.

Glasgow Loves Concrete?

I have been asked to speak, alongside sculptor & mural designer Charles Anderson and Professors Branka Dimitrijevic & Remo Pedreschi, at an event coinciding with Glasgow Doors Open Days on Saturday 21st September (see separate post).

I intend to give an overview of Brutalist brick and concrete architecture in Glasgow & Strathclyde, with reference to case studies I have carried out as part of the Scottish Brutalism research project. My talk will begin at 16:00 and will last approximately 40 minutes. I hope you are able to attend, and would appreciate your thoughts on the project.


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