Initially, the Barbican was developed as part of a utopian vision to transform an area of London left devasted by bombing during the Second World War. Construction planning began and, in the end, introduced a new modern architecture to the area.
In 1960 the Royal Shakespeare Company and the London Symphony Orchestra were involved in the planning of the Barbican providing valuable input and design.
In 1971, construction officially began.
The Centre took over a decade to build and was opened by the Queen in 1982. Her Majesty the Queen declared it ‘one of the modern wonders of the world’ and throughout time, it has been acknowledged as one of the most significant architectural achievements of the 20th century. With the building seen as a landmark in terms of its scale, cohesion and ambition, it offered stunning spaces for events, venues and residential living. The unique location at the heart of the Barbican Estate made it an internationally recognised venue as well.
Throughout the decades, the Barbican Centre has showcased and also become the home to some of the most acclaimed and prestigious orchestras in the world such as the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Guildhall Symphony Orchestra to name a few.
The Barbican Centre has stood the test of time and coupled with its signature brutalist architecture design, it is an icon of London and British design. British brutalist architecture emerged in the 1950s constructing buildings characterised by their minimalist construction that showcased the bare building materials and structural elements over decorative design.
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The Barbican Centre was the perfect example of this with its exposed concrete, brick, steel, glass, angular geometric shapes and monochromic colour palette. Not so modern in comparison to buildings nowadays however if you dive a little deeper into the story and history of this beloved building, it is a marvel piece of British architectural history.
Today the Barbican Centre and its surrounding neighbourhood remain one of London’s most ambitious and unique architectural achievements; a city within a city that is raised above street level and draws on a rich palette of references. It is home to over 4,000 residents across 2,000 flats, organised around schools, a church, a library, an artificial lake, conservatory and an arts centre. No detail was left unconsidered in the design and finally result.
People looking to move to the Barbican area and benefit from what the area has to offer, please do get in touch!
We provide a range of services such as property valuations, house valuations, flat valuations providing more value for your home. As mentioned, whether it be for letting, sales, buying, rentals, Alex&Matteo know Barbican and would be more than happy to show you around!
Alex & Matteo