The pictures above and below are of the Minton-Capehart Federal Building
in downtown Indianapolis. Named after two members of the United States Senate, Sherman Minton (D) and Homer Capehart(R), the building was constructed in 1974, in the Brutalist style. The style got its name from the French for "raw concrete," beton brut, an accurate description for both the building's material and it's appearance.
Among older structures in the surrounding area,
the building appears to be a fortress. This may be appropriate
in that it houses offices for the Social Security Administration,
the Internal Revenue Service, and the Federal Bureau of
Investigation, among others. The building is easy to navigate;
its layout is almost intuitive and offices are easy to find.
However, given all the concrete and narrow windows,
it is claustrophobic to work there as the
only windows are on the outer perimeter.
(Guess which workers have the best offices?)
When the huge, yellow ochre inverted ziggaurat was dedicated,
people were outspoken about the stark expanse of the baby-doo
colored exterior. In response, world-renowned graphic designer
Milton Glaser was commissioned to design a mural that
spans the 600-foot wall at the main entrance. This was in 1974,
just as Glaser was beginning his stellar career.
It may also be ironic that the "big business of bureaucracy"
is housed in a building the style of which was initially associated
with a philosophy of socialist urban ideology.