Happy Anniversary to Our Neighbour the Barbican!
Informare has been based a stone’s throw from the Barbican for over two years. Seeing as the iconic Brutalist building celebrated 40 years this month, we felt a proper walking tour of the estate was well overdue.
The Barbican Centre first opened its doors to the public in 1982, the building itself was designed by architects; Chamberlin, Powell and Bon. The centre took over a decade to build and is seen as a modern landmark in terms of its scale, cohesion and ambition. Its stunning open spaces and unique location have made it an internationally recognised venue, originally built as a revolutionary, modern design after the destructions of WW2. The Barbican Centre is now a Grade II listed building, acknowledged as one of the most significant architectural achievements of the 20th century.
On our tour of the Barbican Centre we discovered a tropical jungle on our doorstep, the Conservatory is filled with over 1,800 species of plants and trees, some of which are rare and endangered. Also home to several exotic fish and terrapins, the Conservatory gave us the opportunity to learn more about biodiversity and endangered plants in their natural habitat. We also learnt that It takes over 2 hours to water the entire conservatory! We took a lunchtime slot and enjoyed a leisurely stroll amongst nature as a peaceful break from our busy working day. It is one of the largest conservatories in London and is definitely a hidden gem, we encourage you to escape the concrete jungle to explore the Barbican Conservatory if you have the chance.
Most important to note, the centre boasts a huge variety of facilities, including; The Hall seating up to 1943 people, a Theatre divided over four levels, a 280 seat cinema, a 164 seat studio theatre, the curve (this is an exhibition space), the conservatory as well as plenty of public spaces. The Barbican Centre has also recently announced that it will be going through a major renewal process by making improvements to the environmental performance of the building. They have already made several steps towards their net zero target, you can read more about this on their website.
The centre has served as the creative and cultural hub of the city and has provided a platform for artists and performers to showcase their work from all over the world. We look forward to exploring the arts further through the extensive exhibitions and events that the Barbican has planned for their anniversary year!