Education In A Modern World

Impington Village College, 1930s: Materials

Impington Village College: Aerial perspective of the school buildings and grounds

Impington Village College: Aerial perspective of the buildings and grounds, 1936
Designer: Edwin Maxwell Fry and Walter Gropius
© RIBA Library Drawings and Archives Collections  

This dramatic bird's-eye perspective of the college gives some indication of the form and profile of the buildings. The school is an essay in geometry: right angles form long and low buildings, while curved walls and butterfly roofs encase areas for greater activity.

This picturesque drawing is a break from Gropius's analytical, axonometric line drawings done at the Bauhaus. Along with the building's warm brick facing, this romantic drawing stems from Gropius's association with more conservative British architects and a desire to contextualise the project. Early Modernism, heavily associated with steel, concrete and glass, rarely employed brick. However, the college worked with a mixture of new and old traditions; the brickwork reflected the local buildings, while industrial-sized expanses of glass were strikingly modern.


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