grafitti 2

grafitti, Southbank Centre, London

I published a photo of one of these mushroom columns during my concrete discussion last year, which covered issues of formwork, brutalism and transparent construction methods.  The historic value of brutalism, erupting in England over the demolition of Peter and Alison Smithson's Robin Hood Gardens, has reached this brutalism backwater, where the only truly béton brut building we have in this small city, the Planetarium, is never discussed, but dreary copies of copies of le Corbusier are.  It is as if theoretical debates are heard as murmurings from distant stars – misheard actually and applied to completely inappropriate pre-cast concrete-panelled buildings.  

The photo above, of a kind of grafitti paradise, says nothing about the architecture, its function or ownership (so this isn't political protest) but does say something about the identification of concrete surfaces as durable canvas and about gaps in surveillance.  Elaborate wall paintings take time; time is allowed here.  It isn't the grafittiists that disrespect the buildings, but the owners of the buildings themselves who are responsible for their care.