Twentieth Century Architects: Chamberlin, Powell & Bon
By Elain Harwood
The Barbican is one of London’s landmarks and Britain’s largest listed building, yet its architects, Chamberlin, Powell and Bon (CPB), are little known today. Their leader, Peter Chamberlin, died young and little of their archive survives. But recent academic interest has revealed a complex story about three determined characters and a surprising variety of fascinating architecture.
Chamberlin worked on the Festival of Britain, but the practice was formed only in 1952 when Geoffry Powell won a housing competition in London. The resulting Golden Lane Estate is as light and brightly-coloured as the adjoining Barbican is monumental. In between these projects, the firm produced a range of buildings that pushed concrete technology to its limits, including houses and schools, Murray Edwards College (New Hall) in Cambridge, and major extensions to Leeds University. These projects are beginning to be recognised as among the best buildings of the 1960s; this book explains how they were developed and executed.
London 2011, 16.5cm, x 23.5cm, illustrated, 145pp. Paperback.