Tuesday, 6 January 2015

A Year in Pictures – 5 January 2015 – Another Monstrous Carbuncle

Bit off more than I could chew with this photo, and no mistake.

The church office where I work in the City of London reopened today after the Christmas and New Year break. There were many good points, including a very productive working lunch with my colleagues (fish and chips in the neighbouring pub, since you ask).

The walk between Bank and my place of work generally takes me past the brand new 20 Fenchurch Street, which is generally now referred to as "the Walkie-Talkie". There is much wrong with this building on architectural and town planning grounds and many hope that "lessons will be learned" from its overweening intrusion on the skyline and streetscape of the Square Mile. Time is not on my side to go into greater detail in this post, but there is a cogent and witty critique by Rowan Moore that has recently appeared in The Guardian that gives a good summary of just what is upsetting most (it seems) who are acquainted with the building.

The jolly thing is of course here to stay for the next few years and cannot be ignored, so it will probably make a few appearances in this blog over the coming months. Today I offer an attempt at conveying the one aspect of the W-T that I find in any way pleasing, but I should first offer the following caveat (or even mea culpa). Architectural photography has many pitfalls, particularly if you are shooting with a small camera, as I will be most days. Also, during the hours of darkness, all sorts of blotches, lighting flares and image noise can frolic and sport more freely in the digital playground. Add to this my getting to grips with the complexities of imaging software, and you have a recipe for bleary eyes, the burning of midnight oil and results that will have me laughed out of serious photographic circles.

Drum roll...

The north and west sides of 20 Fenchurch Street viewed from pavement level. The building, especially the restaurant garden area accommodated in its bulging summit, may be wonderful for its occupants and offer stunning views over London, but it bullies its surroundings in an outrageous fashion.  

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