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Minimalism has long been the critics’ choice of style when it comes to creating beautiful websites. If a web developer is able to use an overwhelming amount of white space—literally empty parts of a page—to make a website more pleasing, then minimalism worked its magic. Don’t get us wrong, minimalistic websites are fantastic and the style isn’t out of fashion yet. There’s just something on the horizon that seriously skewers the idea of minimalism, and turns it into something else.

This burgeoning style is brutalism, and it’s a little hard to explain. Primarily, it’s an architectural thing. The Unite d’Habitation by Le Corbusier is the perfect example of a pure brutalist piece. In the simplest terms, brutalism thrives on imperfection. What you think makes a brutalist website ugly is purposefully put there.

A Few Samples

Brutalism is something that we at Denverdata Web wish to undertake more of. This is a curious trend, and for a better view, we’ll present a few examples that exhibit the best (or the worst, wherever you stand) of brutalism:

The holy grail of brutalist websites, you’ll certainly be vexed when you first see it. You’ll also be lost because you probably haven’t seen designs like this since the heyday of 90s Internet and dial-up connections.

It would be quite a struggle not to use the word “ugly” here. There’s no flow, minimal structure (if any), and the content is just confusing. You’d think that this is the work of a web dev amateur, but it’s not.

Its unusual domain name doesn’t do justice to the unusual website. It’s much simpler than the previous entries, but we’re willing to bet this isn’t something you’ve seen before. With a light purple background and pure text content, this is straight from the early days of the Internet.

A Philosophical Protest

Brutalism, if you got the gist, is a protest to the perceived aesthetic standards. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s overly prevalent for something “ugly.” One website described it as “a gussied up version of intra-generational reactionist tendencies.”

Written By Tom DeGerlia

In March 1998, Tom DeGerlia combined his passion for the web with his experience in database development to bring Denverdata Web (now Colorado Digital) to life. As the President and Founder, Tom has grown the company to be where it is today.