Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Who You Callin' Ugly?

There are alot of top ten, twenty, fifty and one hundred lists out there. Some of them for good...such as the Sexiest Man Alive People Issue or the NY Time's Bestsellers List. And some are bad, very bad, such as PETA's worst dressed celebrity list or the annual Razzy awards. Although many can say they've seen alot of bad art out there, but has there ever been a ranking? I haven't found a list ranking Picasso versus Van Gogh yet, but stumbled on to an interesting list in the world of architecture.
The British architecture magazine Building Design annually awards a prize to the worst building erected in Britain over the past 12 months. This contest, also known as the Carbuncle Cup, takes nominations by the mag's readers and also uses a panel of architects and critics to select the year's worst eye sore. How was the ugliest chosen? It actually wasn't just on looks alone...that would be way too shallow. The building's setting, the budget and the extent to which the client was disappointed were all considered.

Who took first? LA-based Hamilton Architects should be hiding under their blueprints for the Liverpool Ferry Terminal. Ellis Woodman of the Telegraph and a juror described the building perfectly by saying, "Looking like a karaoke version of a Zaha Hadid project, it takes the form of a skew-whiff cross-section that has been extruded like a stick of rock. The long elevations could hardly be more boring, the Dr Caligari-style end fa├žades no more grotesque. It would be a nightmare building in any setting. The fact that it sits not only within a UNESCO world heritage site but directly in front of the Three Graces – the Royal Liver, Cunard and Port of Liverpool buildings, which for nearly a century have been the very emblems of the city – makes its construction utterly inexplicable."

Hamilton Architects didn't have the project listed on their site....wonder why. Click here to see all of the heinous buildings built from the past year. I think i'll take a stroll down to the Green just to get clear my head of all these pretty ugly projects.

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