As global trend forecasters, we at MC&Co Trend have watched the rise of Brutalism in interior design over the past few years. For those unfamiliar with the term, Brutalism refers to a style of architecture that emerged in the mid-20th century, characterized by its use of raw concrete, angular shapes, and a sense of weight and solidity.
While Brutalism was once considered a harsh and uncompromising style, we are now seeing a shift towards a softer, more commercial aesthetic that we call “Brutiful.” This new iteration of Brutalism combines the raw, industrial feel of the original style with more refined materials and a focus on warmth and comfort.
The origins of Brutalism can be traced back to the post-World War II era when architects were looking for a new language to express the values of a changing society. The movement took its name from the French word “brut,” meaning raw, and was characterized by rejecting traditional ornamentation in favour of a more utilitarian approach.
In furniture and interior design, Brutalism was often referenced using raw concrete, metal, and other industrial materials. Pieces were often heavy and angular, with a sense of weight and solidity that mirrored the architecture of the time.
Today, we are seeing a new generation of designers reinterpreting the Brutalist aesthetic in exciting new ways. One standout example of a designer reinterpreting the Brutalist aesthetic in exciting new ways is Ukrainian design duo Yakusha x Faina. They have created a range of furniture and lighting that combines raw concrete with more delicate materials like glass and brass, resulting in stunning and unique pieces that capture the Brutalist trend’s essence while infusing it with a sense of refinement and refinement elegance
Danuta Krill, another Ukrainian designer, creates furniture and lighting that is both minimal and bold, with a focus on sculptural forms and contrasting textures. Other global designers embracing the Brutalism trend include 101 Copenhagen, a Danish brand known for using raw materials like stone and terracotta, and In Common With, a California-based studio that combines the Brutalist aesthetic with a focus on sustainability.
As we look ahead to interior trends for 2023 and beyond, we expect to see the Brutalism trend continue to evolve and adapt, with designers finding new ways to balance the raw, industrial feel of the style with softer, more commercial elements. At MC&Co Trend, we believe the Brutalism trend speaks to a broader cultural shift towards authenticity, simplicity, and a focus on the Essential. Whether in architecture, furniture, or interior design, the Brutalist aesthetic offers a bold, unapologetic statement that is timeless and timely.
Written by Michael Cleghorn, CEO and Founder of MC&Co Trend.