About The Brutalist Interior
Brutalist interior design, a popular interior design theme, has fascinated not only interior design enthusiasts but homeowners as well. While there are a lot of opinions and criticisms surrounding the brutalist style, it remains a unique and eccentric style that makes both the interior and exterior of buildings exude personality and charm.
What is brutalist style and what makes it unique from other interior design styles? Brutalism is a known architectural style that originates from the 20th-century modernist movement and became popularized in the 1950s. During this time, modernist brutalist buildings were on the rise. Modernist works of Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, and Oscar Neimeyer, and the rise of the Bauhaus movement became the determining factor that popularized this style even more.
Today, brutalist architecture and interior design are considered classics. In this blog, we’ll take a deep dive into the features and characteristics of Brutalist Interior Design and shed some practical tips on how to properly incorporate this style in your interior spaces.
5 Key Features of Modern Brutalist Interior Design
1. Raw, Unfinished Surfaces
Modern Brutalist interiors often embrace the use of raw, unadorned materials such as concrete, steel, and exposed brick. These materials are celebrated for their natural, rugged beauty. Concrete walls and floors, for example, are typically left untreated, showcasing their rough textures and imperfections. This emphasis on raw surfaces creates a sense of authenticity and honesty in the design.
2. Monolithic Décor
The term “monolithic” refers to the use of massive, solid forms and structures within the interior space. In Brutalist interior design, you’ll often find large, imposing furniture pieces, sculptures, or architectural elements that dominate the space. These monolithic décor elements contribute to the overall sense of strength and solidity that characterizes Brutalist design.
3. Lighting Fixtures Made of Steel
Steel is a common material choice for lighting fixtures in modern Brutalist interiors. Steel fixtures are often angular and geometric in design, adding an industrial and minimalist aesthetic to the space. These fixtures can also incorporate exposed bulbs or unique, sculptural elements that enhance the overall design and create a visual focal point.
4. Iconic Modernist Furniture
Modern Brutalist interior design often includes iconic modernist furniture pieces. These pieces are known for their clean lines, minimalist shapes, and functional design. Examples might include chairs and tables by designers like Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, or Marcel Breuer. These furniture pieces complement the brutalist aesthetic with their simplicity and elegance.
5. Emphasis on Structural and Spatial Depth
Modern Brutalist interiors place a strong emphasis on the architectural and spatial qualities of a space. This means that the design highlights the structural elements, such as beams, columns, and load-bearing walls. These elements are often left exposed and celebrated, showcasing the inherent strength and integrity of the building. The use of depth and layering in the design can create a sense of drama and visual interest.
5 Practical Tips on How to Incorporate Modern Brutalist Interior Design in Your Home
If you’re looking to bring a touch of modern brutalism into your home, we’ve got you covered with these practical tips.
- Embrace Raw Materials
The essence of modern brutalist design lies in its use of raw materials, and concrete is the star of the show. Incorporating concrete elements like walls, floors, or countertops can instantly give your space that industrial edge. However, if the thought of an all-concrete room feels too harsh, consider exposed concrete accent walls or decorative concrete panels to strike the right balance between the brutalist aesthetic and comfort.
- Play with Minimalism
Brutalism and minimalism go hand in hand. To achieve the modern brutalist look, decluttering is key. Opt for furniture pieces and decor that are functional, clean-lined, and free of unnecessary ornamentation. Minimalist pieces in neutral colors like gray, black, and white complement the rawness of concrete, creating a harmonious and balanced interior.
- Make Lighting a Focal Point
Lighting can play a crucial role in achieving the brutalist aesthetic. Large, statement lighting fixtures made from materials like steel, iron, or concrete can be both functional and visually striking. Pendant lights with exposed bulbs or sculptural chandeliers can cast interesting shadows and add a sense of drama to the space.
- Introduce Natural Elements
While concrete is the star of the show, introducing natural elements can soften the harshness of brutalism. Incorporate wooden furniture, indoor plants, and textiles in earthy tones to create warmth and contrast. Wooden accents can provide a beautiful counterbalance to the cold, industrial feel of concrete, while greenery adds life and vibrancy.
- Pay Attention to Texture and Detail
Modern brutalism isn’t just about the materials but also about texture and detail. To create depth and interest, experiment with different textures such as rough concrete, smooth glass, or polished metal. Consider adding architectural details like built-in shelving, alcoves, or niche walls to break up large concrete surfaces and add character to your space.
- Industrial Hardware and Fixtures
To fully embrace the brutalist style, consider incorporating industrial hardware and fixtures. Opt for exposed metal elements such as steel-framed windows, iron door handles, and brushed stainless steel faucets. These details not only add authenticity to the design but also contribute to the overall industrial feel of the space. Look for fixtures with clean lines and a matte or brushed finish to maintain the minimalist aesthetic.
- Artistic Expression
While minimalism is a significant component of brutalist design, it doesn’t mean your space has to be devoid of artistic expression. Incorporate artwork that complements the brutalist aesthetic. Consider abstract sculptures, paintings, or photography that can serve as focal points and add personality to the room. Artwork can soften the starkness of concrete while still adhering to the overall design concept.
Modern brutalist interior design offers a unique blend of raw industrial aesthetics and minimalist elegance. By embracing raw materials, decluttering, focusing on lighting, introducing natural elements, and paying attention to texture and detail, you can successfully incorporate this bold style into your home. Whether you decide to go all-in with exposed concrete walls or opt for a more subtle approach with concrete accents, modern brutalism can transform your living space into a visually striking and functional masterpiece. So, roll up your sleeves, get creative, and let your home reflect the captivating allure of modern brutalist design.