Geometry + Geology is an exploration of the formal and expressive affinities between Brutalist architecture and glaciated rock formations in northern England. The particular similarities I want to depict are the sense of sublime scale and monolithic bleakness. The rough, weather-stained face of the shuttered concrete resembles the irregularities found in the erosion-scarred terrain of mountain rock. The darkness of the material in wet and grey weather matches that of the frequently dour conditions of the mountains. The shadowy nooks and crevices inspire trepidation and invite exploration. In The Seven Lamps of Architecture, Ruskin writes of the significance of ‘power’ (or the sublime) in architecture, citing the epic, uninterrupted wall, the ‘precipice’, as the archetypal expression of abstract power. The effect of severe, unyielding magnitude also carries with it a sense of melancholy in its solitude. The Brutalist buildings photographed exemplify this sense of imperviousness: solitary, stark, with intersecting planes conveying a sense of geological force and weight. The geometric compositions add to a sense of abstraction. There are no obvious symbolic forms introduced by the architects. The geometry is strong, but irregular. The buildings, considered as wholes, do not have lines of symmetry; again, suggesting a comparison with mountain rock.
Limited edition archival prints are available on request. The series is photographed on 5x4 in. Ilford black & white sheet film, which is drum scanned and printed on fibre-based silver gelatin paper by Metro Imaging in London.