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Why everyone hates this concrete building

And why brutalism dominates US college campuses.

When you look at college campuses across the US, you’ll see massive concrete buildings everywhere. Many of these are designed in a style of architecture called “brutalism,” and it’s as divisive as it is distinctive.

Brutalist buildings strive for honesty and transparency in their form and materials. This often means using simple materials like raw untreated concrete as well as using bold geometry.

Its origins can be traced back to the architect Le Corbusier, who pioneered many of the concepts that would become popular among brutalist architects.

Brutalism found its way onto college campuses in the wake of World War II. With veterans returning from the war and a baby boom in the US, campuses expanded their facilities to accommodate the growing enrollment. And they wanted to convey their ambition and progressiveness by utilizing these modernist styles.

But, as explored in the video above, these buildings weren’t always popular with the public. And they became less so as time went on. We look at Evans Hall at UC Berkeley, which some people view as the ugliest building on campus and whose future hangs in the balance of shifting tastes in architecture. So what does the future hold for these buildings?

You can find the video above and the entire library of Vox’s videos on YouTube.

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