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Rainy nights at Strand-on-the-Green with Cheerful Friends: Rediscovering Theo Crosby's Original New Brutalist House

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Stephen Parnell



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Routledge, 2019.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


In 1952, Alison and Peter Smithson designed their Soho House in central London. Published by their housemate Theo Crosby in Architectural Design magazine, the Smithsons claimed it as the first example of the “New Brutalism,” though it remained unbuilt. At the same time, Crosby designed for himself a small studio house at Strand-on-the-Green, West London which he built but which remains unpublished, even though it shares many of the Soho House’s Brutalist characteristics. This article makes use of Rudolf Wittkower’s proportional theories – dear to New Brutalist discourse – to analyze and compare the two houses. Through analysis of the original drawings, New Brutalist discourse, and the biography of its architect, the article examines Crosby’s house for the first time, contextualizes it in terms of the New Brutalist canon, and considers possible reasons for its previous oversight.10.1080/20507828.2019.1646571

Publication metadata

Author(s): Parnell S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Architecture and Culture

Year: 2019

Volume: 7

Issue: 2

Pages: 291-316

Online publication date: 08/01/2020

Acceptance date: 18/07/2019

Date deposited: 19/07/2019

ISSN (print): 2050-7828

ISSN (electronic): 2050-7836

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/20507828.2019.1646571


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