Photographs of The Barbican Estate, 1975 | David Hoffman

The Barbican Estate in London is a large residential and cultural complex located in the heart of the city. It is a prominent example of brutalist architecture and was built between the 1960s and 1970s. The estate includes residential buildings, the Barbican Arts Centre, the Barbican Conservatory, and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

The residential part of the Barbican Estate consists of high-rise and low-rise buildings, housing thousands of residents. The architectural design is characterised by its use of concrete, elevated walkways, and a mix of residential and communal spaces. The Barbican Arts Centre is a major cultural hub that hosts various events, including concerts, theatre productions, art exhibitions, and film screenings. Known for its unique and somewhat controversial architectural style, it has become an integral part of London’s urban landscape and cultural scene. It represents a vision of integrated living and cultural spaces within an urban environment.

In 1975, the photographer David Hoffman documented life on the landmark brutalist estate, capturing not only The Barbican Estate still in development but also a very different Britain. David aimed to document the drastic changes in the city’s landscape at the time. The shops, cafes, and locations that he and his friends were familiar with were being bulldozed to make way for developments that were unaffordable and out of their reach.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

The Barbican Estate, 1975.
The Barbican Estate, 1975.

Photo © David Hoffman, all rights reserved.

Gallery first published 20th October, 2019. © David Hoffman / British Culture Archive. All rights reserved. 

READ OUR FULL FEATURE WITH DAVID HOFFMAN HERE

DAVID HOFFMAN PHOTO LIBRARY

All images © David Hoffman, all rights reserved. No usage or reproduction of any kind without prior permission of the copyright holder.

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