Weird architecture extends far beyond Brutalism and the foreboding Cold War edifices of the Eastern Bloc. Across the world, people have made their home and work spaces out of trains, planes, automobiles and other unexpected objects. This article explores a selection of weird and wonderful buildings in Europe and North America…
The Crooked House, Poland
This utterly bizarre building can be found in Sopot, Poland. It almost looks like the image has been distorted somehow – as in a hall of mirrors at the fairground. Based on drawings by Jan Marcin Szancer and Per Dahlberg, the unusual roof is covered by a layer of sheet metal beneath green enamel roof tiles, giving the illusion of dragon scales.
The Longaberger Building, Newark, Ohio
This truly impressive (whatever your taste!) example of mimetic architecture in Newark, Ohio can safely be called the world’s largest basket! Those on the inside of the seven storey structure can enjoy the natural light through the massive skylight above. But looking at this, it could be argued that the founder of mimetic (or novelty) architecture was an utter basket case…
Cubic Houses, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Optical illusion or sloping structure? This intriguing building design in Rotterdam does a clever job of muddling the eye as it tries to decide whether it’s actually sloping or standing straight…
Habitat 67, Montreal, Canada
Located on the St Lawrence River in Montreal, Habitat 67 emerged from the masters thesis of its architect, Moshe Safdie. Originally designed as “affordable” housing, huge demand for the strange postmodern building’s units made it rather expensive – not quite the ideal envisioned by its founder. Habitat 67 was designed to illustrate the lifestyle people would live in increasingly crowded cities.
Container City, London
This London building is made from converted shipping containers. While it might seem a rather odd choice to some, the containers are immensely strong, long lasting, and if they can survive the storms and tempests of the world’s oceans, the drizzly London air shouldn’t pose too many problems. The image above depicts Container City II, completed in 2002, at Trinity Buoy Wharf. Located adjacent to the first phase, its bright colours and ziggurat shape offer modern work solutions within its 22 studios.
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