brutal decay

There are those who still think the bravura brutalist design of St Peter's Seminary in Cardross, 25 miles from Glasgow, to be an eyesore. There are those who say it was blighted by technical problems from the day it opened 45 years ago. Then there are those who believe that this is one of the greatest modern buildings in Europe. Whatever your opinion, St Peter's was deemed important enough to be placed on the World Monument Fund list of the "World's 100 Most Endangered Sites" in 2008.

Now, Scottish arts group NVA, funded by Creative Scotland and a number of UK trusts and foundations, has been given two years to raise £10m to enable the partial renovation of the great concrete structure. The aim is to transform the graffiti-plastered ruin and the surrounding Kilmahew woodland strewn with litter into an arts-led public space...

Since the early 1990s there have been several attempts to find new uses for St Peter's, but the NVA proposal garnered praise internationally when it was unveiled at the 2010 Venice architecture biennale. But NVA has just two years to raise funds and to spirit the project into life. It wants people – and not just locals and artists – to join in the discussion and, hopefully, help raise funds. St Peter's is a site of international importance, but if NVA fails, the lands and ruins will return to the Archdiocese; and, then – without purpose and funding – they can only fall into further decay.

from The Guardian, 12 May 2011
St. Peter's in Cardross, by architects Gillespie, Kidd & Coia

1 comment: