Friday, November 15, 2013

Notes on Giles Gilbert Scott

It seems amazing to me that the man who designed the Battersea and Bankside Power Stations also designed the red telephone box, such defining, iconic images of London as they are. The future of two of them remains in doubt: the telephone box has been made obsolete by mobiles and poor Battersea Power Station has been left to rot and crumble for decades. At least now it's finally being redeveloped, and with Lord Foster and Frank Gehry on board (his first English project too), it's a vaguely exciting prospect.

Born in 1880, Sir Giles Gilbert Scott must have felt architectural tradition weighing heavily on his shoulders; his father, uncle and grandfather were all prominent architects. But Scott's greatest ability was to marry the tradition of the previous century's architecture with the modernity of the 20th century. His work includes scores of churches and cathedrals, bridges and memorials.

In 1928 Scott designed Whitelands College in Putney, now converted into luxury apartments. He also designed his own house (pictured), on the outskirts of Hyde Park, and lived there from 1926-1960.

Previously on Barnflakes:
2 Willow Road
Inside Battersea Power Station

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