Thursday, August 7, 2008

Materiality: Concrete Solutions

Concrete is one of those amazingly malleable and adaptable materials. I've mentioned the concept of air purifying concrete, permable features, as well as interesting textures and board-forming techniques. Here's a few new examples from around the globe. Starting off, I absolutely love the rough facade treatment (via Arch Daily), from Architect: Marcio Kogan in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The contrasting from interior to exterior is distinct, with the smooth unfinished interior juxtaposed against the haphazard exterior condition. I think it's a great treatment.

:: images via Arch Daily

An interesting variation on this theme, patterning concrete via stamping with unique shapes (as opposed to say, Bomanite brick It'd be interesting to see how matted sandblasting would work as well - for images and/or signage to aid in urban wayfinding or streetscape art.

:: image via Coolboom

And some recent posts about a Dutch application of air-purifying concrete, via Archinect, via Physorg: "Experts from the University of Twente developed and tested the concrete paving stones which contain a titanium dioxide-based additive. In laboratory conditions, the additive -- under the influence of sunlight -- binds the nitrogen oxide particles emitted by car exhausts and turns them into harmless nitrates. "With one rain shower everything is washed clean," the institution said in a statement. Nitrogen oxides, produced by industry and motor vehicles, are among the main air pollutants that lead to acid rain and smog."

:: image via Physorg

Finally, there are a number of products and installations related to permeable concrete, but Permapave offers a combination of in situ concrete in paver form... definitely an interesting option. Link via Portland Spaces

:: image via Portland Spaces

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