Tuesday, June 12, 2007

National Grid

As seen in an unexpected place. Edwin Lutyens is an architect that postmodernists got very excited about in the 70s and 80s, an exemplar of a free classical tradition that was interrupted by the continental lefty funny accented emigres of the '30s, with their grids, their concrete and their politics. So naturally one has to oppose him and everything he stands for - something not too difficult, given the twee villas, pompous edwardian offices, mock castles and imperial fantasies that made up his output. Unfortunately he could do some really quite bafflingly original work when he could be bothered, and hence the inexplicable, brilliant Grosvenor Estate, on Page Street in Pimlico.

What we have here is a line of Zeilenbau blocks, locked into a grid plan, in a grid shape, modelled into a portland stone and brick grid, and probably the most advanced buildings in London for the time (late 20s), save perhaps Charles Holden's London Transport offices or Etchells' little High Holborn block. It's position, just by Westminster, the home office and surprisingly, a classic caff goldmine, make it even eerier - as does its continued use as social housing. Although they never gesture at the Italianate prettiness of Portmeirion, there's something very Prisoner about this place - a peculiar, regimented, somewhat dictatorial yet cute aesthetic that could only be English.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reference to The Prisoner comes into sharper focus as you realise that Thames House, MI5's HQ is at the top of Page Street.

1:33 pm  
Blogger owen hatherley said...

Aha! That I did not know

3:56 pm  
Blogger david@viceuk.com said...

I grew up on that estate and always wondered about the design. Thank you for the information.

10:30 pm  
Blogger dinoibo said...

Sesli sohbet Sesli chat
Seslisohbet Seslichat
Sesli sohbet siteleri Sesli chat siteleri
Sesli Chat
Sohbet Sesli siteler
Sohbet siteleri Chat siteleri
Sohbet merkezi chat merkezi
Sesli merkezi sesli Sohbet merkezi
Sesli chat merkezi Sohbetmerkezi
Sesli Sohbet Sesli Chat
SesliSohbet Sesli chat siteleri
Sesli sohbet siteleri SesliChat
Sesli Sesli siteler
Seslimuhabbet sesli muhabbet
sesli sohbet sesli chat siteleri
sesli sohbet siteleri sesli chat
seslisohbet seslichat
seslikent sesli kent
sesli sohbet sesli sohbet siteleri
sesli chat sesli chat siteleri
seslisohbet seslichat

2:44 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here what i found -> vision correction

9:09 am  
Blogger ekle paylas said...

nice blog Thanks for sharing. voicesohbet was really very nice.
sesli chat siteleri sesli sohbet
sesli sohbet siteleri sesli chat
seslichat seslisohbet
sesli siteleri chat siteleri
sohbet siteleri sesli siteler
voice sohbet sesli sohbet siteleri
sesli sohbet seslisohbet
sohbet siteleri sesli chat siteleri
seslichat sesli chat
herkesburda herkes burda
sohbetmerkezi sohbetmerkezi

6:17 pm  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home