The Lowry – an appreciation

I mentioned in my last post that I rather like the Salford Quays area, so today I took a trip up there again and had a wander around The Lowry.

I credit The Lowry with sparking my interest in, and appreciation of, modern architecture. I had long felt that the only worthwhile buildings were old(er), either because I was impressed by the feats of engineering using ‘primitive’ methods or the obvious pride the builders took in their constructions.

When I first visited The Lowry, soon after it was opened, I realised that here was something that was interesting for its own sake, not because it was monumental, or was covered in fripperies, but because it seemed to delight in a form that could only be achieved using the materials that it was made of. Externally, the steel contrasted with the then still run-down quays and basins of the area. It seemed to stand there, brazenly saying ‘look at me’, and I found that quite refreshing.

It was the interior that really knocked me out, though. The brash, in-your-face use of vivid colours – purple, yellow, orange, red – was a revelation.Think about it; so many building interiors are muted colours or ‘classic’ rich colours – dark, sombre.

But inside The Lowry, it’s an assault on the eyes – but in a good way. The use of these bright hues delineates the internal features, such as staircases and walls. Coupled with the striking use of non-verticals and curved paths, it’s a feast for the imagination just walking around.

So I made these pictures as a sort of celebration of colour and line.