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Abstract / Description of output
This article is the second part of a discussion of what we term the ‘centre-idea’. This idea, we argue, was fundamental to British modernist architecture and planning praxis from the mid-1940s onwards. It represented an active spatial environment in which people could develop their selves and their interests at a time of expanding democracy, which required new forms of community association. We locate this idea’s roots in the pre-war British voluntary sector, specifically the activities of the Peckham Experiment and the Pioneer Health Centre which housed it, and evidence its long-term influence on post-war architecture and planning theorization. The article begins its discussion in wartime Britain and it traces how the ‘centre-idea’ was absorbed into the committees, plans and discussions which underpinned post-war reconstruction. It also documents how a CIAM dominated by Anglo-American theorists developed the idea into a particular understanding of, and approach to, modernist design and planning. These two strands are brought together in an analysis of their realization in a series of now state-sponsored projects, which include the Design Centre and the South Bank Arts Centre.
Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)
- MARS group
- Jaqueline Tyrwhitt
- J.M. Richards
- S. Giedion
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- 1 Finished
1/03/20 → 31/10/22