Brutal D.C.

October 8, 2023 - March 4, 2024

Diller Scofidio + Renfro’s reimagining of the Hirshhorn Museum.

BRUTAL D.C. is an exhibition co-curated in partnership with University of Oklahoma comprising archival documents, recent re-imaginings, and fine art photography that considers the historical underpinnings, current state, and future possibilities of key Brutalist buildings in Washington, D.C. The exhibition is presented in three thematic segments: “The Emergence of Brutalism” in Washington, D.C., featuring archival documents and construction photographs that tell the story of how the phenomenon emerged in the U.S. capital city during the Cold War; “The Current State of Brutalism,” featuring current, large-scale photographs of select D.C. buildings, as well as commentary from D.C. locals and visitors; and “Reimagining Brutalism,” featuring re-imaginings of buildings such as the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and the J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building by leading architecture firms and students from the School of Architecture at UNLV. 

This project is a partnership between noted professional photographer Ty Cole and published author Dr. Angela Person. Cole’s work has been published in DwellArchitectural Digest, Departures Magazine, and more. Dr. Angela Person is an assistant professor at the University of Oklahoma (OU), where her research and teaching engage architectural history, and behavioral and emotional outcomes of the built environment. 

Image: Diller Scofidio + Renfro's reimagining of the Hirschhorn Museum. Courtesy of the architects.