“Tropical brutalism” is, without a doubt, the hottest new aesthetic in the world of design. What exactly is “tropical brutalism,” you ask? This creative catchphrase describes a brand-new theme in décor and architecture has just recently been defined. Brutalism is a style defined by minimalist, “block-like” concrete architecture that grew in popularity during the Mid-century. Originally inspired by the new, hip developments in Bali, this trend is bound to be everywhere by 2022. Hop on the “tropical brutalism” train early, and create the most stylish space your guests have ever seen. This trend takes coastal décor to unexplored territories of interior design, and combines two completely unexpected themes. From concrete floors to palm-inspired wall art, this is tropical brutalism.

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Modernism vs Brutalism

Silhouettes by the Sea

Concrete & Greenery

Commercial meets Tropical

Palms and Modernism

A Moody Paradise

Tropical Decorating Ideas

Modernism vs Brutalism

Modernism encompasses a wide range of interiors. While brutalism certainly falls under the category of modernism, it has its own distinct features. Sometimes referred to as post-war modernism, this industrial style is all about a neutral palette with masonry-inspired details. Functionality is just as important and aesthetic, and monolithic forms are essential. Geometric shapes and clean lines are the base of this sleek era. Unlike the modern “Hygge” style, coziness is not the focus of brutalism. Make sure to incorporate concrete and avoid coziness for a true brutalist appearance. Keep your furniture sparse and focus on maximizing empty space. As long as you blend shades like grey and charcoal with island-inspired details, your home will be the trendy envy of any houseguest.

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Tropical Wall Art

If you’ve mastered brutalism, but you’re stumped on how to add a tropical touch to your modern space, consider wall art. A canvas print that exemplifies the contemporary tropics is perfect for taking your home from brutalist to “tropical brutalist.” Plus, you can incorporate a print that depicts modernist architecture to really emphasize the theme. Hang your tropical artwork in your main living space to make a visible impact.

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tropical brutalist

Silhouettes by the Sea

Rather than the popular palm print in classic California interiors, tropical brutalism challenges the traditional palm tree décor by playing with shadowy silhouettes. There’s something moody and dark about tropical brutalism, and the juxtaposition between island-inspired décor and modern details creates a stunning balance. Besides the natural wood, stick to predominantly cool tones like grey-green, charcoal, and white. Industrial-style lighting is also a must for a truly brutalist interior.

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tropical brutalism architecture

Concrete & Greenery

You can’t have brutalism without cement. Stone floors are a must for this style, and they will set the tone for your entire interior. Tropical green should act as your pop of color among a sea of cement grey. Natural houseplants and live greenery are essential to offset the industrialism. Play with contemporary surfaces like marble to contrast the potted palm trees and ferns. Make sure you maximize your natural light for the sake of the plants and to offset the cool color palette.

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brutalist tropical

Commercial meets Tropical

There’s a commercial element to brutalist interiors. Furniture should be simple and functional, similar to a commercial space. Exposed brick and exposed pipes add to the overall charm. Think, warehouse chic meets beachside retreat. Keep your furniture low to the ground and experiment with stormy seaside prints. This trend is the opposite of the traditional beach-cottage, so avoid a “quaint” appearance at all costs.

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warm brutalism

Palms and Modernism

For a creative twist on tropical brutalism, play with geometric patterns and unfinished furniture. Your interior should look slightly unpolished for the ultimate “hip and casual” effect. You should create the illusion that plants are growing freely throughout your home; as if your modern space has been overgrown by leafy intruders. This combination of nature and human-built architecture is what makes tropical brutalism work so beautifully.

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tropical brutalist architecture

A Moody Paradise

Tropical brutalism has an attitude, and that’s all part of its charm. Capture the energy of a stormy day at sea with textured art and stone-inspired shades. Give the illusion of the warm sun peeking through cloudy skies with bright white pillows and paint. Looking for modern living room ideas? The combination of sleek and textured finishes will create a stunning contrast. Create a space that evokes emotion in an unpredictable paradise.

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tropical modernism

Tropical Decorating Ideas

Whether you live in a balmy climate or you’ve simply fallen in love with this unique style, tropical brutalism is popping up all over the world. With perfect simplicity and high-end furnishings, this trend appears expensive without looking ornate. When it comes to modern living room ideas, this style works best in newer constructions with a minimalist base to build upon. The epitome of indoor-outdoor living, tropical brutalism is for daring designers who are ready to try something totally different.

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Annette Schmucker