PROVOCATIONS: Brutalism: Remove or Reuse? - Webinar

  • Date

    Thursday, February 18 2021

  • Time

    6:00pm - 7:30pm

  • Location


“Brutalist” buildings, like the J. Edgar Hoover Building and Hirshhorn Museum, are buildings that people either love, or love to hate. 

In recent years, the Third Church of Christ, Scientist, designed by Araldo Cossutta of I.M. Pei’s firm, was demolished here in DC. Yet elsewhere, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York saved Marcel Breuer’s Whitney Museum of American Art (now The Met Breuer) while IKEA saved his New Haven-based Pirelli Building by transforming it from an office building into a hotel. What should be the future for these controversial Béton Brut buildings?

  • Should they be REMOVED and replaced by the next new thing?
  • Should these historic buildings be REUSED?

Join this esteemed panel in provocatively considering both sides of the futures of these buildings.

Moderated by: 

Douglas Palladino, AIA — Architect and Adjunct Faculty, The Catholic University of America School of Architecture and Planning 


Dr. Harriet Harriss, RIBA ARB Assoc. AIA Ph.D. PFHEA FRSA — Architect and Dean, Pratt Institute School of Architecture

Deane Madsen, Assoc. AIA LEED Green Associate — Architecture Critic, Photographer, and Founder of BrutalistDC

Jaime Van Mourik, Assoc. AIA LEED AP BD+C — Vice President, Education Solutions, U.S. Green Building Council

Miriam Kelly RIBA ARB AABC Intl. Assoc. AIA — Principal, Beyer Blinder Belle Architects & Planners LLP

This program is part of PROVOCATIONS, a Debate on Design series organized by the Washington Architectural Foundation. PROVOCATIONS is generously funded in part by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. 

At the completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Define Brutalism.
  • Outline the argument that Brutalist buildings should be removed and replaced.
  • Outline the argument that Brutalist buildings should be adapted and reused. 
  • List buildings in DC that are in the Brutalist style.