Blueprint for a Landscape

27.05.2019 Work

The American artist Sarah Sze materializes in Blueprint for a Landscape her work with the most public and challenging vocation to date. Commissioned by MTA Arts & Design to collaborate in the design of installations exhibited in existing stations along Manhattan’s Upper East Side, the author states: “A subway station is one of the most democratic places you can find. It has regular local audiences as well as international and ad hoc audiences. It’s always a discovery, seen in transit, not an art destination”.

Blueprint for a Landscape understands each entrance along with the connecting platform at 96th Street station as an opportunity to study our behavior through space. The project consists of 4 murals and 12 panels totaling 4,300 tiles in two different formats (20 mm thick). These porcelain tiles manufactured by Alcalagres and Estudio Cerámico have a total surface area of approximately 14,000 square metres.

Thus, the ceramic pieces incorporate manipulated photographs of familiar objects – paper sheets, scaffolding, birds, trees and foliage – captured at a whirlwind speed that reflect the dizzying rhythm of the passengers who come to the station every day. “They were obsessed with this idea of accelerating the experience of time, especially through transit,” concludes Sze.


Kneaded Memory

15.05.2019 Installation

The Portuguese artist Dalila Gonçalves has developed “Kneaded Memory”, a garden of sculptures that currently occupy the Blankenbergue square in Flanders. The installation is composed of a series of pieces that resemble rocks and fragments with different shapes and sizes.

In order to develop the installation, the surface of the stones was mapped and the ceramic pieces were moulded so that they fit perfectly to these irregular and rounded surfaces. In this way, a grid was created to indicate where each decorative component would be placed permanently.

It is through this conjugation that Goçalves sought to cross the local Belgian narrative and the traditional Portuguese craft relationship with the ceramic tile manufacturing process. In fact, part of the surfaces of these shapes are covered with manufactured tiles that typically adorn the vibrant facades of his native country. In addition, since Flanders is historically renowned for the quality of its ceramics and tiles, the patterns of the tiles came from Blankenbergue.

Based on experimental play, the permeability of materials and the processes of artistic practice, Dalila Gonçalves delves into the relationship between kneaded memory and oblivion.

Kneaded Memory

Sustainable Housing 4.0

07.05.2019 Technology

After the construction of Gaia, the first architectural module based on raw earth and 3D printing, WASP  (World’s Advanced Saving Project) starts a new technological application with a view to Expo 2020. The 3D printed house measures 30 square meters and is located in Massa Lombardo, in Shamballa, in the region of Emilia-Romagna, Italy. Their goal is to help solve the world’s housing problem by using natural, low-cost, low-impact local materials. In this sense, the use of this technology is not limited to a specific urban or rural context.

The construction in question represents an advanced eco-sustainable model, especially based on the performance that masonry guarantees in terms of interior comfort. This method means a substantial reduction in the costs induced by the use of raw earth and residues from the agricultural chain.

The technique used in this project demonstrates the potential for the use of diversified materials in 3D printing and construction in general. In fact, waste materials from a raw material such as rice can become effective insulation. The cavities inside the walls allow ventilation and efficiency in general. In this sense, willing to interpret its vision in a way compatible with the demands of each applicant, 3D printing WASP intends to start the construction of an eco-neighbourhood. This training would be able to implement replicable construction strategies in any territorial circumstance.

Infinity Blue

26.04.2019 Installation

Infinity Blue, the work designed by Grimshaw Architects and Studio Swine, is part of the Invisible Worlds exhibition, a title that refers to the world beyond our senses. The 20-ton, 9-metre-high installation contains 32 vortex cannons programmed to exhale perfumed fog rings. It is a way of representing the organism that provides the oxygen we take in each breath.

The sculpture is inspired by the prehistoric atmosphere of the earth and is the result of research into one of the first organisms to produce oxygen. “We were really interested in cyanobacteria, tiny oceanic organisms that are invisible to the naked eye. Yet they represent the largest biomass on our planet and create 70 per cent of the Earth’s atmosphere.”

The surface of Infinity Blue, designed by Studio Swine, is lined with oxide-enameled, steel-framed dark blue clay ceramic tiles manufactured by Darwen Terracotta. In addition, its texture is created from an algorithm inspired by the reaction-diffusion systems found in creatures such as zebras or corals. For the steam rings, Givaudan, a fragrance and flavor specialist based in Paris, has created a custom fragrance for the installation.

Arcobaleno Tower’s restoration

16.04.2019 Work

In the course of building works for the new Porta Garibaldi in Milan, a concrete water tower was erected in the early 1960s. Nowadays, Arcobaleno Tower ceramic restoration has become a benchmark in the skyline which welcomes the visitors, showing the creative attitude of the city.

The first renovation of the infrastructure, which refers to the artisanal origins of the Italian ceramics industry, took place within the framework of the 1990 World Cup. Therefore, 100,000 ceramic tiles in 14 different colours transformed the ruined building into a symbol of the city. After that, coinciding with Expo 2015, restoration work was again carried out so that the building could shine in all its splendour.

The Original Designers 6R5 Network were responsible for both the design of the intervention in the 1990s and its recent refurbishment. Moreover, the Arcobaleno Tower ceramic restoration is part of the Wonderline project, which links art and architecture through themes such as color and tradition.


Arcobaleno Tower’s restoration

Flight Assembled Architecture

05.04.2019 Technology

Flight Assembled Architecture is the first architectural installation assembled by flying robots, free from the touch of human hands. The work is the result of a rigorous architectural design by Gramazio & Kohler and a visionary robotic system by Raffaello D’Andrea.

Thus, over 1.500 modules which are placed by a multitude of quadrotor helicopters, respond to mathematical algorithms that translate digital design data to the behavior of the flying machines. In this way, the flying vehicles extend themselves as “living” architectural machines and complete the composition from their dynamic formation of movement and building performance. The design, with an architectural vision of a 600m high “vertical village” for 30’000 inhabitants unfolds as a model in 1:100 scale. This newly founded village would be located in Meuse, taking advantage of an existing TGV connection that brings its inhabitants to Paris before long.

It is from this quest of an “ideal” self-sustaining habitat that the authors pursue a radical new way of thinking and materializing verticality in architecture. Flight Assembled Architecture is located at the FRAC Center in Orléans, in a department which is dedicated to put together a collection devoted to experimental architecture.

The geometric world of Enric Mestre

27.03.2019 Sculpture

Originally trained in painting, sculptor ceramist Enric Mestre Estellés that born 1936, studied at San Carlos Fine Arts School in Valencia and the ceramics school in Manises. During his time as a ceramics student, he met Alfonso Blasco and connected whit the artistic interests of this ceramist. The artist, in the thirties, alongside other such as Llorens Artigas and Francisco Ibáñez, took Spain into the mainstream of modern ceramic art.

Mestre, both as a teacher and practitioner, has himself come to be regarded as an important liberating link between this formative generation and that of Spain’s younger avant-garde and he has been recognized worldwide for his sculptural objects. Influenced by the ceramics of the Far East, his propositions were based on using high temperature bodies and investigating new vitrifications and glazed that made. This made unnecessary to employ painted ornament in the traditional manner.

Enric Mestre’s art is evocative as boxlike, slab built architectural structures of austere colors dominated by right angles. Objects of an interlocking geometry, of light and shadow, that create tableaux to the imagination whit a poetic charm which saves them from only being rational and cold. Though these objects are often carefully planned and developed. Mestre insists on intuition as if obeying a kind of constructive poetics restraining and controlling personal expressions without eliminating them.

The geometric world of Enric Mestre

Coverings 2019

20.03.2019 Event

Coverings 2019 is the preeminent event for the ceramic tile & natural stone industry in North America. All in one venue, it allows to see thousands of dazzling products, connect with suppliers from around the globe and discover ground-breaking techniques.

Coverings is also dedicated to providing education, including CEUs, through: conference sessions, hands-on workshops, live demos, show floor tours and more. Year after year, education program of the event includes leading speakers from every segment of the industry to ensure you stay current and have access to all the resources you need to improve.

At this edition, the event will take place in April 9-12 in Orlando, Florida and attendees could view the latest products, trends, and tools from 1,100+ of the world’s leading manufacturers and suppliers. Want to take a trip around the world? Coverings 2019 pavilions include: North America, Italy, Spain, Turkey, and Brazil. Want to find inspiration? Coverings featured new trends, textures, shapes and alternative uses of tile and stone.


The ceramic pieces for the Ohla Hotel

05.03.2019 Technology

Designed by the architect Daniel Isern, the new Hotel Ohla Eixample sits at the heart of Barcelona’s Eixample district, in what used to be a 1970s office block.

The façade is also unique in its use of robotics. “With the help of Cerámica Cumella and the IAAC (Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia), we’ve invented an algorithm that uses sound to create a template that a robot etches onto the surface of the ceramic tile while it is extruded. This process allows us to create an infinite number of pieces. In conclusión, each one unique and different but all of them with the same lines. For this pieces, we chose “Vivaldi Recomposed” by Max Richter, which, like us, takes something from the past and brings it up to date”, says the architect.

More than 800 pieces of different sizes make up a vast puzzle of vertical ceramic modules, blurring the order and number of storeys. Therefore, the façade also has five large wooden frames in it that are in fact balconies and that break up the lines of the frontage. This system has been used to create the large ceramic mural that covers the entire ground floor from the reception area to the Xerta restaurant, via the café and the cocktail lounge.

Cuyperspassage in Amsterdam

28.02.2019 Work

Cuyperspassage is the name of the 110 metres long new tunnel at Amsterdam Central Station that connects the city and the waters of the IJ-river. Moreover, its design makes a clear division between the two modes of travel: pedestrian path and cycleway.

Along the footpath wall there is a tile tableau designed by Irma Boom which design steps off from a restored work by the Rotterdam tile painter Cornelis Boumeester (1652-1733). His tile panel depicting the Warship Rotterdam and the Herring Fleet is in the collection of the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. The tableau fades away towards the IJ-river, the lines of the original work gradually dissolving. Its drawn lines and pixels visualize the transition in art from the old to the new.

The ceramic company, spent five years making the 46,000 wall tiles for the Cuyperspassage in Amsterdam, as well as 33,000 floor tiles, in the traditional Dutch tile size of 13 x 13 cm. The whole recalls old kitchens in Amsterdam canal houses, so that the tunnel is experienced as a safe place – as an urban room.

Cuyperspassage in Amsterdam

Interview to Pedro Azara

18.02.2019 Interview

Brick by Brick, organized by Pedro Azara, was the first exhibition devoted to the uses, functions, symbolism and aesthetics of this type of ceramic. The exhibition includes works from the ancient world to the present, particularly from the Mediterranean area, including the Middle East.

In this event, the Museu del Disseny wanted to highlight the importance and the continuing use of ceramic in architecture. In addition, focusing on both long-standing traditions and innovation in this field over the course of the millennia.Therefore, the show features a selection of three hundred ceramic pieces applied in architecture.

We share with you a video of the exhibition Brick by Brick: Ceramics Applied to Architecture explained by his curator the architect Pedro Azara. The exhibition, was held simultaneously with the Forty-Seventh Congress of the International Academy of Ceramics in Barcelona, an event that took hosted in the Disseny Hub Barcelona building, was hold in the Museo del Diseño in Barcelona from September 2016 until January 2017.

Cradle to cradle

11.02.2019 Work

Looking for paying a Portuguese tribute combining the tradition of tiles and contemporary design, Pedrita studio was invited to create a panel for the Hotel hall.

Convento Salvador Hotel, located at Alfama historical neighborhood, is an adaptation of one of the oldest Lisbon convents. The Convento do Salvador Centre belongs along with the Hotel, to the Association for Children’s Cultural Promotion – APCC, and is decorated with works of artists such as Ana Hatherly, Paula Rego, Pedro Cabrita Reis, João Pedro Croft, Julião Sarmento, among others. Continuing the work developed with discontinued industrial, end-of-the-line tiles and following the same concept as the panels made for Capristanos caffé (2016) and Best Guess For This Image solo show, which we were captivated by the uncertainty of the portrayed picture.

This video by Pedrita Studio, shows the design and manufacturing of the ceramic mosaic of the Queen Catarina, who would have lived in this convent.


24.01.2019 Event

The International Fair for Architectural Ceramic, Bathroom and Kitchens CEVISAMA 2019, has established itself as the most prominent event of the Spanish ceramic industry, complemented every year by new exhibitors from other countries, inspired to take part by the fair’s ongoing expansion and the palpable recovery of Spain’s domestic market.

The 37th edition of the fair, an essential meeting for distributors, promoters, architects and designers in the international sphere, will take place from 28th January to 1th February 2018 at Feria Valencia where the latest innovations from all sectors related to the ceramic sector.

In order to attract more audience to the fair, CEVISAMA Lab 2019, Cevisama’s ideas powerhouse, is one again set to feature some eminent names in architecture and interior design such as the Pritzker Prize Jacques Herzog, Enrique Sobejano, Carme Pinós, Dominique Perrault, Ángela García de Paredes and Josep Ricard. The second Forum of Architecture and Design will be taking place the days 29 and 30 January in Feria Valencia.

Kate Newby at Kunsthalle Wien Karlsplatz

20.01.2019 Installation

New Zealand artist Kate Newby, creates handmade, crudely constructed sculptural interventions appropriating the materials and vernaculars of architecture. Kate Newby’s works are poetic confrontations with spatial conditions and the fleeting nature of interactions. Through small as well as radical interventions into existing environments, she directs our view to what is often overlooked in everyday life. The objects she creates are testimonials to individual experiences, with the specific context of creation remaining inseparably linked to the resulting work.

For the exhibition “I can’t nail the days down” at Kunsthalle Wien Karlsplatz, Kate Newby continues her ongoing engagement with ephemeral and often peripheral situations. Therefore she created a large-scale work installed on the floor in the Karlsplatz building, using bricks as artistic material. The sculpture unfolds as a material texture that invites visitors to step onto the work, to move across the surface and encounter its details. The artist modified unfired bricks and inserted found elements: shattered glass, old coins and bits of clay collected, that through the firing process unexpected formations are produced.

Kate Newby at Kunsthalle Wien Karlsplatz

Ceramic Tiles for the V&A Museum

15.01.2019 Technology

An open courtyard whit a purpose-built gallery for its world-class temporary exhibitions is the project of Amanda Levete studio  for the new entrance of Victoria and Albert Museum.

This choice of material responds specifically to the structure of the original building of the museum and its collections, including numerous striking examples of 19th-century decorated ceramics. Therefore, ceramic was selected for the courtyard floor for its fine texture, its bright white color and its inherent strength. 30 different models partly glazed in 10 shades from blue to green were designed in more than 100 versions.

It took two years, working closely with Koninklijke Tichelaar company, to finalize the tile design and to develop a clay recipe that ensured non-slip performance. Besides, it took another two years to pass the required British Standards, to test tile longevity and to manufacture, by hand, the 14,500 tiles. Each tile bears the mark of the craftsman through subtle variations of shape and shade. Watch this video to see how these tiles were made.

Tile of Spain Awards 2018

25.11.2018 Awards

The verdict of 2018’s Tile of Spain Awards took place on 24th of November in Castellón, with the prestigious architect Jorge Silvetti as the jury chairman and Ricardo Carvalho, Elías Torres, Jordi Garcés, Belén Moneo, Mario Ruiz and Ramón Monfort as other jury members.

This year, the architect Joan Miquel Seguí Colomar was the winner of the 17th ASCER’s Tile of Spain Award’s first prize for their project “New entrance to the intermodal station” in Palma in the Architecture category. The project is a transitional space where the use of the Mediterranean tradition of the latticework as a filter between the urban space and the station itself is recovered.

In the Interior Design category, the judges decided to award first prize to the project “House facing the sea” by Xavier Martí and Lucía Ferrater in which the jury assesses the presence of ceramic flooring as a line of connection between the different spaces. Finally, in the Degree Project category the winner was “A good success” by Manuel Bouzas Barcala from ETSA Madrid.

The art of thinking through architecture

21.11.2018 Obra

Athos Bulcão (1918-2008). He was a Brazilian Plastic Artist who began to devote himself to the plastic arts after he left his medical degree. He studied drawing and lithography at the Académie de La Grande Chaumière in Paris, up becoming, thanks to his impeccable order to paint, his intelligent and precise way of intervening with the tradition of tiles in buildings or urban space, in the perfect relationship between art and architecture.

Influenced by Paul Klee, Fernand Léger, Miró, Portinari or Van Gogh, the Brazilian artist collaborated with several architects, including Oscar Niemeyer and João Filgueiras, designing tile panels for the buildings of the new city of Brasilia.

Since 1992, the Athos Bulcão Foundation has been dedicated to preserving and disseminating the work of the plastic artist, developing various projects to promote, through art, culture and communication, the social development of the entire community.

The art of thinking through architecture

The world begins after every kiss

10.11.2018 Work

The photographer Joan Fontcuberta and the ceramist Antoni Cumella have come together to make this photomosaic mural located in Plaza de Isidre Nonell in Barcelona on the occasion of the Tercentenary of the fall of Barcelona in 1714.

This work has been made with the contribution of thousands of citizens. Pictures were collected after a call to the citizens to participate in this collaborative art project. They have sent personal images whose required theme was ‘moments of freedom’. With them, 4000 ceramic tiles were formed, distributed in 50 rows of 80 tiles each, which together form the image of kissing lips. Joan Fontcuberta said that it had been inspired by a phrase by Oliver Wendell Holmes “The noise of a kiss is not as deafening as a cannon, but its echo is more lasting.”

Demonstrator LIFE CERSUDS

30.10.2018 Work

The LIFE CERSUDS demonstrator in Benicasim (Castellón) is a European project for the adaptation of cities to climate change. It develops an urban system of sustainable drainage from the reuse of ceramic tiles of low commercial value. The reduction of CO2 emissions associated to the manufacturing of pavements thanks to recycling the material of the ceramic stock, the decrease of the sealed floor areas in the cities, the recovery of natural infiltration systems to avoid flooding and the reduction of the heating known as “heat island” effect, are the aims to which this project will give response providing qualified and verifiable results.

This video shows the manufacturing process of the ceramic drainage pavement as well as its execution and implementation at the Benicasim demonstrator.


Porcelain Insulator Factory

26.10.2018 Technology

At the beginning of the twentieth century, the porcelain insulator virtually replaced glass on all electrical distribution, even at low voltages, as the superiority was demonstrated in both insulation quality and strength.

In this post, we want to share with you a video about how the company PINCO produced porcelain insulators for power lines in 1935. We hope you enjoy it!

Interview to Ramon Bosch

15.10.2018 Interview

We share with you an interesting interview with Ramon Bosch from bosch.capdeferro Arquitectura on his Collage House in Girona. It is part of the exhibition Brick by Brick. Ceramics applied to architecture hold in the Museo del Diseño de Barcelona from September 2016 until January 2017.

Renovation always means establishing a relationship with the past, with the pasts that are accumulated in the space of the intervention. And also with the future, with that imaginary idea of the place we would like to aim. But above all it means a great capacity to work with the present. To erase or to draw: to eliminate, clean, repair, reconstruct, replace, incorporate, add…

Magnetism Meets Architecture

02.10.2018 Technology

Confronting gravity’s determinism over everyday life, the Dutch designer Jólan van der Wiel set out to manipulate this natural phenomenon by exploiting its own power: magnetism. Van der Wiel developed a machine that uses the shape shifting ability of magnetism to create objects and furniture. For his Magnetism Meets Architecture project, he has created a series of ceramic objects using a process that exploits the conflicting properties of natural materials and processes. His latest experiments with magnets have resulted in fantastical architectural models made using metallic clay.

Cota Zero

10.09.2018 Work

The studio can ran arquitectura are the authors of the plastic intervention in the new atrium of Estação Sul and Sueste. It is part of the project for the expansion and remodeling of the Fluvial Station of the South and Sueste in Lisbon, the 1932 project of the architect Cottinelli Telmo. This extension, whose author is Atelier Daciano da Costa, aims to transform the Fluvial station into Interface, creating in this building the connection between the metropolitan and the Transtejo ships.

The support of this ceramic intervention is the ceiling and column assembly of the new Atrium of the Interface. It is intended that it develops in an inseparable way of space, merging it with architecture, but at the same time stands out and reinforces it. The ceiling with the dimensions of 17m by 23m is loose from the walls, has a right foot of 5.6m and is supported by 8 columns of 0.60m in diameter. Underneath this roof the stairs of access to the metropolitan emerge.

Breath marks

19.09.2018 Work

This project conceives the idea of transforming an underused incineration plant into a warm local resting place, by infusing people’s breath. Breath marks is a public art collaborative project at Doosan Elementary School in Doksan, Seoul. Jaechan Yang, the director  of Urban Society, and the artist Sun Choi proposed the idea of covering its façade with 3000 handcrafted tiles, that hold local people’s breaths, collected traces of blown inks. Eventually this visualized breaths become the incineration plant itself.
You can watch the whole process in this video.

Breath marks

Tile of Spain Awards 2018. Open call

06.09.2018 Awards

The Spanish Ceramic Tile Manufacturers’ Association, ASCER, organizes the competition for the Tile of Spain Awards of Architecture and Interior Design. The prizes aim to improve awareness and understanding of ceramic tiles made in Spain amongst architects and interior designers and promote their use by these professionals.

The jury for this sixteenth edition is made up of internationally-acclaimed professionals working in the architecture and design sectors: Jorge Silvetti (chairman), Ricardo Carvalho, Elías Torres, Jordi Garcés, Belén Moneo, Mario Ruiz and Ramón Monfort.

In the previous edition, the award in the architecture category went to the project Mont-Ras Winery by Jorge Vidal and Víctor Rahola. The 3 metro stations L9 Barcelona by Garcés – de Seta – Bonet arquitectes.

PlatFORM exhibition at Tate Liverpool

23.08.2018 Exhibition

Join Environmental Ceramics for Architecture Laboratory (ECAlab) for an immersive and sculptural presentation in Tate Exchange from 22-30 September. Drop in anytime and play, create and experience PlatFORM – a multi-sensory, glowing sculpture that responds to movement and the human touch.

Accompanying PlatFORM’s Tate Exchange showcase will be a symposium that brings together architects, artists, industry professionals, engineers, researchers and the public to discuss emerging thinking and ceramic futures. Find out more and book your free place here.

The Factory Floor

16.08.2018 Technology

The Factory Floor is an installation of 8,000 handmade ceramic floor tiles that cover the new floor of the Chini Room at the 16th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia curated by Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara.

The installation presents the latest experimental production method to be developed by Granby Workshop, the Liverpool based architectural ceramics manufacturer set up by Assemble in 2015. Reinventing the traditional encaustic clay tile-making process, these tiles are made by randomly combining pieces of different coloured clays in a mould under extreme pressure. Each one captures a moment of chance in the act of making and they are all different. You can see the process here

All images and video credited to Granby Workshop and Assemble.

The Factory Floor


12.08.2018 Event

CERSAIE is the major international showcase for the latest trends in the ceramic and bathroom design sector. The world’s greatest ceramic exhibition will be taking place once again in the Italian city of Bologna from 24 to 28 September 2017, which constitutes a meeting point for the most innovative brands from all across the globe.

For decades, this Bologna fair has contributed to the prestige of ceramic materials and has inspired a great deal of highly demanding architectural, design and interior design projects. As a result, the Bologna fair has risen to become the greatest showcase for state-of-the-art trends in ceramics, glazing, bathroom ware and furniture.

Interview to Eugeni Bach

09.08.2018 Interview

We share with you an interesting interview which is part of the exhibition Brick by Brick. Ceramics applied to architecture, hold in the Museo del Diseño de Barcelona from September 2016 until January 2017. Eugeni Bach explains his project Housing Casp 74 St. in Barcelona.


Mobile Robotic Tiling

02.08.2018 Technology

Adapting to material tolerances and an uncertain environment of a construction site are key aspects in the research and development of a mobile tiling machine. These challenges are met through integrating specific perception and localisation strategies into the robotic control. The research is conducted by ROB Technologies in collaboration with Gramazio Kohler Research and the Singapore ETH Centre.

Olivier van Herpt Functional 3D Printed Ceramics

12.07.2018 Technology

By pushing the limits of existing 3D printing technologies, Olivier van Herpt has arrived at machines that produce larger forms and work with materials beyond conventional plastics. Out of paraffin and even clay, he has printed collections of objects that soften the precise and indifferent definition of industrial design. Vases seemingly handwoven by the hands of individual artisans, ceramics crafted with random imperfections, and pottery shaped by the environment they were made in. These manufactured objects demonstrate how van Herpt reinserts humanity into the man-made machine.

Olivier van Herpt Functional 3D Printed Ceramics

Jørgen Hansen. Firingsculptures

05.07.2018 Artwork

Jørgen Hansen started as a ceramic artist in 1965. For many years he was doing handmade, mostly thrown pottery and at a certain point he felt the need for a more extensive expression and in 1994 he made his first Firingsculpture for a museum in Denmark.

The Firingsculptures are built in 1-3 weeks in a continuous process. They are made out of concentric terracotta lattice walls, one behind the other and with openings of different kinds. Inside there’s space left for combustible that will set the core on fire.

The climax takes place when the sculpture, wrapped in insulation, becomes its own kiln and fires to 1000-1200 centigrades. At this stage the insulation is taken away and for short intense moments the sculpture glows from the inside with the most luminous light and unusual visual phenomenons happen.

“My Firingsculpture can resonate the site where it is built. When the sculpture is glowing you feel both the instant and the entire period of the project from the first step on the bare ground until its complete erosion. It is about time and everything’s perpetual change”.


Ocean Blues

14.06.2018 Artwork

In this claymation for Stevanna Jackson (from the musically talented Jackson family), the French artist Romane Granger uses carefully modeled clay to suggest the complex ecosystem of life on the ocean’s floor. In Oceans Blues, the coils and folds of clay shift in tune with Jackson’s music as waves, flower-like designs and human characters emerge from the sea.

Architectural Terra Cotta

21.06.2018 Publication

Gladding, McBean, in Lincoln, is one of the oldest companies in California and a pioneer in ceramics technology which has contributed immeasurably to the state’s industrialization. During the heyday of architectural terra cotta, the company dominated the industry in the Far West.

The book Architectural Terra Cotta of Gladding, McBean, by Gary F. Kurutz and Mary Swisher, is a remarkable photographic collection of this pre-eminent producer of decorative terra cotta from 1890 to 1930. It showcases over 100 photographs, including neo-classic motifs of the earliest San Francisco skyscrapers to ornaments of Art Deco Hollywood palaces. Some of these photographs can be seen in detail on our slideshow.

The photographer Mary Swisher selected, printed and cared for a collection of over 10,000 negatives, while the historian Gary F. Kurutz put together an informative and entertaining text about the history of the company. The result is an unmissable publication for lovers of architecture, photography and industrial archaeology.

Architectural Terra Cotta

Interview to Toni Gironès

10.06.2018 Interview

We share with you an interesting interview which is part of the exhibition Brick by Brick. Ceramics applied to architecture, hold in the Museo del Diseño de Barcelona from September 2016 until January 2017. The Catalan architect, Toni Gironès, explains his project Dolmen transmitter space in Seró.

Clay Station

24.05.2018 Work

Clay Station is a collaboration between Assemble and the artist Matthew Raw commissioned by Art on the Underground.

Building on London Underground’s rich heritage of ceramics, the project involves the production of more than a thousand hand-made tiles as part of the refurbishment and remodelling of a commercial unit at the entrance to Seven Sisters Underground Station which has lain empty for more than a decade.

This technique entails colouring blocks of plain white clay with body stain and mixing together different combinations before they are sized, rolled, moulded, cut, dried, fired and glazed. The resulting tiles formed from this process will be used to clad the exterior of the building and each one will be unique.

Ceramic pieces of Casa Vicens

15.05.2018 Work

The ceramics from Casa Vicens are one of its most recognisable elements. Can you imagine discovering the process of creating tiles with carnations, the yellow flowers that cover the house’s façades? Led by the master artisan ceramist Manel Diestre, director of the process to restore Casa Vicens’ ceramic pieces, in this video you’ll discover the process of creating artisanal carnation azulejo tiles with the original trepa (transfer-printing) technique.

LIFE CERSUDS. Permeable ceramic paving

10.05.2018 Work

The project LIFE CERSUDS, Ceramic Sustainable Urban Drainage System, funded by the European Commission through the LIFE programme, is developing a sustainable urban drainage system (SuDS) that uses ceramic tiles of low commercial value as a flooring filter system.

The main aim of the project is to enhance city adaptability to climate change and to foster the use of SuDS and green infrastructure. This will be done by designing and implementing a SuDS demonstrator. The demonstrator, envisaged for Benicasim (Castellón), involves the construction of a sustainable urban drainage system via the development of a permeable ceramic flooring, using ceramic tiles of low commercial value. The space foreseen for the demonstrator consists of a street section with light and pedestrian traffic in an established urban setting of about 3000 m2.


08.05.2018 Work

The Droneport project explores the generation of a drone airport network combining the dynamic futurism of drone technology with low-tech buildings that use local materials and traditional building techniques. The network aims to interconnect communities in developing countries that lack appropriate road or rail networks, enabling urgent medical supplies and cargo to be delivered quickly and cost-effectively.

The construction of a prototype droneport shell at the 2016 Architecture Biennale of Venice was made possible by The Norman Foster Foundation together with the Block Research Group (ETH Zurich), plus the support of the LafargeHolcim Foundation. They have developed a high strength, local earth-based product, called Durabric, specifically for the project.

ACAW Workshop

03.05.2018 Event

Representatives of industry and academia from around the world gather in Buffalo, NY for the Architectural Ceramic Assemblies Workshop (ACAW), presented by Boston Valley Terra Cotta and the University at Buffalo‘s School of Architecture and Planning and supported by the UB Sustainable Manufacturing and Advanced Robotic Technologies (SMART).

The workshop’s objective is to introduce and consider the properties of terra cotta earlier in the architect’s design process and to develop research and design models between manufacturing and architectural industries useful to the efficient production of facade solutions.

The ACAWorkshop culminates in a weeklong event, with teams constructing system models from their prototypes, and presenting their studies to peers in the industry.

For more details go to ACAW 2018 Event Website.


Sculptural terracotta enclosure by SHoP

19.04.2018 Installation

These ondulating blocks were manufactured and stacked together to create ‘WAVE/CAVE’, with the aim of providing visitors with a moment of intimacy.

The installation was designed by SHoP architects for Interni Magazine’s Material Immaterial exhibition, which took place as part of Milan Design Week 2017.

Made up of 1,670 extruded unglazed terracotta blocks, the work stands at 10 meters high at its tallest point. Each block has been individually carved, and while they appear complete on the outside, the inside of the installation reveals an intricate pattern created by volume subtraction.

Coverings 2018

12.04.2018 Event

For almost thirty years, Coverings has been the preeminent event for the ceramic tile & natural stone industry in North America. Visitors from every facet of the tile & stone industry find that Coverings is the one event that drives their success, year after year. All in one venue, see thousands of dazzling products, connect with suppliers from around the globe and discover ground-breaking techniques, tips and tricks.

Covering will be taking place from 8-11 May in the Georgia World Congress Center.


Elfsteden Monument

05.04.2018 Work

‘It sil heve’ are the legendary words that were uttered in 1985 when the ‘race of all races’ was able to be held once again after a gap of 22 years. The idea for the project is a picture, which from a distance appears to be a row of skaters helping each other and keeping each other out of the wind, a characteristic scene from the Elfstedentocht (a race on skates passing through 11 Frisian towns). Seen close up, the tiles depict thousands of portraits of all the skaters that have ever finished the race.

The artistic duo of Maree Blok and Bas Lugthart approached Koninklijke Tichelaar Makkum to handle the production process, which involved baking the photos onto the tiles using a screen-printing process.

The project was carried out on the Canterlandse bridge, the last bridge the skaters have to pass under in the Elfsteden route before reaching the finish a few kilometres further in Leeuwarden.

Elfsteden Monument

The charm of repetition

30.03.2018 Event

Under the motto ARTESANÍA: INNOVACIÓN | REVOLUCIÓN | PROYECCIÓN on April 12 will be held the III Jornada de Creatividad y Tendencias, organized by the Museum of Design of Barcelona. During the day, there will be different workshops related to handicrafts, among which we highlight the Design workshop for tiles: the charm of repetition, by Bussoga + Isabel Fernández del Moral.

From the background of ceramic work of the Museum of Design, various mathematical compositions will be studied to design prints. It will be based on the objects of the Museum as a source of inspiration and the personal work of the creatives to deepen the analysis and new proposals of the artisan, industrial and digital production.

Interview to Vicenç Sarrablo

23.03.2018 Interview

We share with you an interesting interview which is part of the exhibition Brick by Brick. Ceramics applied to architecture, hold in the Museo del Diseño de Barcelona from September 2016 until January 2017. Vicenç Sarrablo, Director of the Ceramics Chair of Barcelona talks about the multiple uses and advantages of ceramics.

Ai Weiwei. Sunflower Seeds

20.03.2018 Installation

The Chinese artist, Ai Weiwei, challenges our first impressions with his installation Sunflower Seeds: what you see is not what you see, and what you see is not what it means. The sculptural installation is made up of what appear to be millions of sunflower seed husks, apparently identical but actually unique. Although they look realistic, each seed is made out of porcelain. And far from being industrially produced, ‘readymade’ or found objects, they have been intricately hand-crafted by hundreds of skilled artisans.

Poured into the interior of the Turbine Hall’s vast industrial space at Tate Modern, the seeds form a seemingly infinite landscape. The precious nature of the material, the effort of production and the narrative and personal content create a powerful commentary on the human condition.

Ceramic Constellation Pavilion

12.03.2018 Technology

The University of Hong Kong’s Department of Architecture has collaborated with the Sino Group to create Ceramic Constellation Pavilion.

The structure seeks to expand contemporary views on architectural construction by creating a 3.8 meter tall pavilion made entirely of 3D printed terracotta bricks, dispensing with tradictional brick-bonding techniques. Instead, the structure’s load-bearing features and overall stability are made possible by each brick’s unique shape and placement.

The overall structure is composed of 2,000 3D printed terracotta bricks. Over the period of 3 weeks 700 kg of raw terracotta clay were 3D printed into individual bricks. Each brick required between 2 and 3 minutes of printing time. The fresh prints the underwent an intensive firing process, baking for an extended period of time at 1025 degrees Celsius. This process makes the pavilion one of the first in its kind that incorporates this specific material system.

Ceramic Constellation Pavilion

Museum & Mosaic Park in Jinzhou

05.03.2018 Work

The project represents the paradigm of the contemporary urban park, which is neither a fragment of the natural landscape nor a landscaped piece of the city, but the mix of both of them. Museum & Mosaic Park has an hybrid character that combines architecture with landscape, and nature with artifice.

On the one hand, the use of broken local ceramic pieces of different colours for the materialization of the pavement and benches of the park and for the facades of the museum evokes the mosaic tradition that was widespread throughout Europe by the Roman Empire and that has evolved along history till the present day bringing technical solutions such as the trecandís technique used by the Catalan modernist architects.

On the other hand, the geometry of the park is inspired by the crackled glaze of the Chinese porcelain developed from the 10th century during the Song Dynasty in the Ru Ware and Ge Ware ceramic pieces. The Mosaic park and the Ceramic Museum remind citizens that the Jinzhou region was once a production area of ceramic and porcelain, although this tradition was lost for centuries, being nowadays forgotten.

Antony Gormley. FIELD

26.02.2018 Installation

FIELD is a project by British sculptor Antony Gormley uses the human form to explore man’s existence in and relation to the world through the earth. ”From the beginning I was trying to make something as direct as possible with clay: the earth. I wanted to work with people and to make a work about our collective future and our responsibility for it. I wanted the art to look back at us, its makers (and later viewers), as if we were responsible. Responsible for the world that it (FIELD) and we were in. I have made it with help 5 times in different parts of the world.

The most recent is from Guangzhou, China, and was exhibited in Guangzhou, Beijing, Shanghai and Chongqing in 2003. It is made from 125 tonnes of clay energised by fire, sensitised by touch and made conscious by being given eyes.

The 210,000 body-surrogates completely occupy the space in which they are installed, taking the form of the building and excluding us, but allowing visual access. It is always seen from a single threshold. The dimensions of the viewing area are equivalent to no less than one sixth of the total floor area of the piece. This viewing area is completely empty. The viewer then mediates between the occupied and unoccupied areas of a given building. I like the idea of the physical area occupied being put at the service of the imaginative space of the witness.” Interview with the sculptor Antony Gormley about FIELD.

Antony Gormley. FIELD

Making Porcelain Insulators

20.02.2018 Technology

General Electric made an industrial short in the 1920s, a silent film that shows how the company produces porcelain insulators for power lines.

Porcelain insulators of this time period were made from china clay, ball clay, flint, and feldspar. In the dry process, ingredients are pulverized and screened to a fine powder and then pressed into moulds. Once moulded, they are trimmed by hand to remove fins and flashing. The pieces are then spray-glazed while spinning on a vertical lathe.

We share with you this version of the short, edited with the addition of some playful ragtime music. We hope you enjoy it!

Substància Cremada

16.02.2018 Exhibition

“The project focuses on the abandoned ceramic factories located in Onda (Castellón). It’s a research line related to the abandoned industrial heritage and the obsolescence of these buildings. Their print on the population is strong, there was a time when the whole town lived into the rhythm of the factories’ shifts and the baking times of the ovens. These pictures build a document where all the details are legible, and unfortunately this is the only thing we are going to have from them in a few years if nothing is done because the degradation rate is increasing year after year.”

Milena Villalba

Substància Cremada

VII Congreso Internacional de Cerámica y Arquitectura

06.02.2018 Event

The School of Architecture of Madrid hosts the 27th and 28th of February the VII International Congress of Ceramics and Architecture under the slogan ‘Ceramic and Soil’, a title that should be considered as a suggestion, but not excludes proposals from other fields related to non-structural ceramics. The event is part of the Network of Ceramic Chairs promoted by ASCER.

On the one hand, the ambition of this congress is to place ceramics in an architectural context from a historical-artistic perspective; and on the other, his intention is to promulgate the work of contemporary architects who have used ceramics in their works.


Art and technology at Villa Nurbs

25.01.2018 Technology

Nature and technology come together to create a perfect combination in Villa Nurbs, work of an unconventional house designed by CLOUD9 in collaboration with the ceramist Toni Cumella and the artist Frederic Amat, who has intervened in each of the ceramic pieces through the application of enamels.

The building is covered by a ceramic skin that proposes a new way of conceiving the facade in the field of architecture. It consists of a series of ceramic pieces designed so that, taken together, they function as if they were a plant wall. According to the orientation, this skin has the ability to isolate the building from unfavorable environmental conditions and to protect it against insolation, rain or strong winds. At the same time, it is permeable to the breeze. A system of tensioned cables in the form of a network that rests on the metallic structure of the facade serves as support for these ceramic pieces. Both elements define the outer layer of the façade.


New life for Paolozzi mosaics

15.01.2018 Artwork

The restoration of Eduardo Paolozzi’s iconic mosaics at Tottenham Court Road station has been completed.

Paolozzi was a leading figure in the Pop Art movement, and this mosaics, from 1986, are widely considered to be one of the most spectacular examples of post-war public art. The designs, that cover 950 square metres, contain references to London’s culture and economy.

Around 95 percent of the mosaics have been retained at the station while it underwent a huge expansion. Wherever possible the original tiles have been reused, and where new tiles have been required they have been closely colour-matched using the same process as the originals. The sections that could not be relocated were transported to the renowned Edinburgh College of Art.

Architecture and Design Forum

08.01.2018 Event

The line-up of speakers at the Architecture and Design Forum that is part of Cevisama Lab, Cevisama’s ideas powerhouse, is one again set to feature some eminent names in architecture  and interior design, as the Pritzker Prize Rafael Moneo and the Portuguese Eduardo Souto de Moura. The Forum will be taking place the days 5 and 6 February under the theme ‘Material Architecture’ in the North Forum Assembly Hall of Feria Valencia as an integral part of the 36th edition of Cevisama.


08.01.2018 Event

The International Fair for Architectural Ceramic, Bathroom and Kitchens CEVISAMA, has established itself as the most prominent event of the Spanish ceramic industry. The last edition of the fair, titled CREATE YOUR OWN REALITY took place from 5th to 9th February 2018 at Feria Valencia and showcased the the newest offers and innovations from all sectors concerning the ceramic field. An essential meeting for distributors, promoters, architects and designers in the international sphere.


28.12.2017 Event

The World Congress on Ceramic Tile Quality QUALICER, biennial event, will be held in February 2018 at the Chamber of Commerce of Castellón. International leaders of the ceramic tile manufacturing industry will be debating the need for strategic conditions and industrial policies that make industrial investment feasible.

Kengo Kuma on his Ceramic Cloud

21.12.2017 Interview

CCCloud (Casalgrande Ceramic Cloud) was Kengo Kuma’s first built work of architecture in Italy and it was completed in September 2010. The monument, located in the middle of a roundabout in front of Casalgrande Padana‘s Headquarters, is the collaborative result of Kengo Kuma’s team, the University represented by Alfonso Acocella and Luigi Alini, and Casalgrande Padana.

The completed structure is 12 meters tall and is a maximum of 1.7 meters wide at the central section. It is composed of nine layers of porcelain stoneware slabs that. This tiles measure 60 x 120 cm and are stacked and held in place by thin threaded bars. Traditionally used as cladding, the ceramic tiles are used in this monument for the first time as a structural component.

Here we share with you an interesting interview with Kengo Kuma on his Ceramic Cloud.


ECALAB and RIBA North present CERÁMICA

14.12.2017 Exhibition

CERÁMICA, a ground-breaking new exhibition at RIBA North supported by ASCER, explores the future use of ceramics and technology in architecture. From 28 October 2017 to 10 February 2018, a series of full-scale installations by ECAlab (Environmental Ceramics for Architecture Laboratory) will enliven RIBA’s new centre on the Liverpool waterfront.

The exhibition seeks to highlight how traditional ceramic techniques and digital engineering processes can be used together to produce more significant and sustainable architectural elements.

One of the main events of CERÁMICA is a symposium on architecture and ceramics that will be held on 8 December 2017 under the title of Molding Futures: Architectural Ceramics Symposium. Experts like Martin Bechthold (director of the Harvard’s GSD), Eric Parry or Maximiliano Arrocet (Amanda Levete Architects) are among the scheduled speakers.

Parisian Floors. Ceramic at your feet

29.11.2017 Artwork

German photographer Sebastian Erras’ Instagram account (Parisian Floors) showcases the bright and beautiful floor tiles of Paris and other cities. Intricate historic mosaics and colourful worn off hidraulic tiles are often the main characters of these pictures. In all of them his shoes peep out, giving a sense of scale and reminding us that sometimes it is ok to look down.

Parisian Floors. Ceramic at your feet

Tile of Spain Awards 2017. Winners

25.11.2017 Awards

The veredict of 2017’s Tile of Spain Awards took place on 24th of November in Castellón, with the prestigious architect Iñaki Ábalos as the jury chairman and Ángela García de Paredes, Víctor Navarro, Bak Gordon, Moisés Puente, Martín Azúa and Ramón Monfort as other jury members.

The architects Víctor Rahola and Jorge Vidal were the winners of the 16th ASCER’s Tile of Spain Award’s first prize for their project Mont-Ras Winery in Girona in the Architecture category. Mont-Ras Winery is a space evolving from the essence of wine, ground and grapes. It was designed as a platform inside the earth with four main spaces and a roof-garden, taking in consideration all the specific conditions required for the wine production and conservation. The jury highlighted the appropriate use of the materials to the industrial and also rustic character of the program and its adaptation to different geometries.

In the Interior Design category the judges decided to award first prize to the project Three metro stations L9 Barcelona by Garcés-de Seta-Bonet Arquitectes. In the Degree Project category the winner was Un jardín de paisajes: recuperación del entorno de la Muralla Zirí en el Albaicín by Rafael López-Toribio Moreno from ETSA Granada.

Ceramic poppies at Tower of London

15.11.2017 Installation

This art installation Blood Swept Lands an Seas of Red at the Tower of London marked one hundred years since the first day of Britain’s involvement in the First World War. Created by artists Paul Cummins and Tom Piper, 888,246 ceramic poppies progressively filled the Tower’s moat between July and November of 2014. Each poppy represented a British military fatality during the war.

The poppies encircled the iconic landmark, creating not only a spectacular display but also a location for personal reflection. The scale of the installation was intended to reflect the magnitude of such an important centenary and create a powerful visual commemoration.

The ceramic pieces were manufactured with techniques used by potters during the First World War (Making the poppies). After the installations all the poppies were sold, raising millions of pounds which were shared equally amongst six service charities.

Tile of Spain Awards 2017. Open call

05.10.2017 Awards

The Spanish Ceramic Tile Manufacturers’ Association, ASCER, organizes the competition for the Tile of Spain Awards of Architecture and Interior Design. The prizes aim to improve awareness and understanding of ceramic tiles made in Spain amongst architects and interior designers and promote their use by these professionals.

The jury for this sixteenth edition is made up of internationally-acclaimed professionals working in the architecture and design sectors: Iñaki Ábalos (chairman), Ángela García de Paredes, Víctor Navarro, Bak Gordon, Moisés Puente, Martín Azúa and Ramón Monfort. Jury’s veredict will be announced on 24th November.

In the previous edition, the award in the architecture category went to a renovation project for Two homes in Oropesa (Toledo) by  Paredes Pedrosa studio. The TABA espazioa gastro space by Ibon Salaberria received the Interior Design award. Access to the video summary of last edition.


15.09.2017 Event

CERSAIE is the major international showcase for the latest trends in the ceramic and bathroom design sector. The world’s greatest ceramic exhibition will be taking place once again in the Italian city of Bologna from 25 to 29 September 2017, which constitutes a meeting point for the most innovative brands from all across the globe.

For decades, this Bologna fair has contributed to the prestige of ceramic materials and has inspired a great deal of highly demanding architectural, design and interior design projects. As a result, the Bologna fair has risen to become the greatest showcase for state-of-the-art trends in ceramics, glazing, bathroom ware and furniture.

Gio Ponti. L’Infinito Blu

25.02.2017 Exhibition

2017’s Triennale di Milano presented the exhibition GIO PONTI: L’INFINITO BLU, dedicated to the ceramic tile designs for the Hotel Parco dei Principi in Sorrento, as well as notes, drawings and photographs of the creative process.

The collection of 33 ‘Blu Ponti’ tiles in 20×20 format was composed of the 27 models used at the hotel, with the addition of five patterns that were never produced and an another one unpublished that was discovered in the archives of the original manufacturer Ceramica D’Agostino. The tiles have been reproduced by Ceramica Francesco De Maio for the occasion.

Alongside this article there is a suggestive animation produced by LIXIL Group (Tokyo) in 2014 for the exhibition Giving Warmth to the Building Skin, The World of Gio Ponti, Father of Modern Italian Design.


Tile of Spain Awards 2016. Winners

17.02.2017 Awards

The architects Paredes Pedrosa were awarded the ASCER’s Tile of Spain prize for their project Two homes in Oropesa in the Architecture category. The veredict took place on 24th November 2016 in Castellón, with the prestigious architect Gonçalo Byrne as the jury chairman.

The project addressed a meticulous restoration and reuse of ruins crossed by walls and arches from an ancient connection between the castle and the village church. Although the use of ceramic has a reserved character, its careful layout and finishes give the space a determining touch of warmth and timelessness.

Paredes Pedrosa won in 2004 the third edition of these awards for Peñíscola’s Congress Centre and obtained in 2011 a honourable mention for Gandia’s Kid University.

First prize in the Interior Design category went to  TABA espazioa by Ibon Salaberria and the first prize in the Final Degree Project category went to In-Situ: Tools and Technology in Traditional Architecture by M Wesam Al Asali.


10.02.2017 Event

The International Fair for Architectural Ceramic, Bathroom and Kitchens CEVISAMA, has established itself as the most prominent event of the Spanish ceramic industry. The 2017’s edition of the fair, titled PERFECT FUTURE, took place at Feria Valencia from 20th to 24th February 2017 and showcased the the newest offers and innovations from all sectors concerning the ceramic…

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