All posts tagged: Concrete

Muuto Spring 2016

Muuto: New Nordic, Spring 2016

Last week I was in Stockholm for the furniture fair, the largest meeting place for Scandinavian furniture and lighting – a haven of clean lines, functional design and muted pastel shades. One of my favourites of the 700-plus exhibitors was Danish brand Muuto, which I’ve written about before. Rooted in Scandinavian tradition, its designs are characterised by a clean aesthetic and craftsmanship, forward-looking materials and fresh creative thinking. The name Muuto comes from ‘muutos’, meaning new perspective in Finnish, hence its aim is to present a new perspective on Scandinavian design. Here is Muuto’s latest imagery from Spring 2016. Isn’t it dreamy with the textural concrete backdrop and rich palette of colours? Let me introduce you to some of the pieces. Above is the brilliant mini stacked storage system on the wall by Julien de Smedt, the Airy coffee table by Cecilie Manz, and the Connect sofa, the Oslo Chair and the Five pouf, all by Norwegian designers Anderssen & Voll. The sofa comes in 11 different modules for numerous possibilities and is upholstered in a range of rich textiles from Kvadrat. I’m …


Converted Brooklyn loft by SABO Project

New York and Paris-based architects SABO Project has completely gutted this Brooklyn loft, located in a former die casting factory built in 1913. A series of new partitions, custom cabinets, glass enclosures and a new mezzanine now define the concrete space, creating private rooms without compromising on daylight. The building’s concrete ceilings and columns can now be seen in all their bare glory, while cabinets alternate as stairs and storage. The turquoise bathroom, a delight in itself, was designed around a diamond shaped ceramic tile, with no less than three colours and nine shades in the bold graphic pattern. All images SABO project


I wish I lived here: a home with raw finishes in Barcelona

Barcelona-based H Arquitectes has designed a family home in the residential area of Sant Cugat, near Barcelona, which has raw finishes such as exposed brickwork and concrete ceilings. The house is essentially composed of three boxes aligned to the north side of the plot to make the most of the sunny south-facing garden. The first box houses the children’s area with three single bedrooms upstairs, while the second one accommodates the main living spaces. The third box contains the parents’ zone, with the bedroom at the garden level and a high ceiling studio on the first floor. The spaces created between the three boxes open directly onto the garden and can be closed off with large folding windows: the first of these serves as an entrance hall and the second acts as an open lounge area. The rooms look so light and airy, I can imagine walking around barefoot and feeling the air circulate around the open plan spaces. One of the main goals was to achieve a close and essential relationship between the house …


Inspired by: Edie Karimova

I love everything about Edie Karimova‘s lookbook for her Spring/Summer 2014 collection- the concrete background, crisp white shirts and pleated architectural dresses. The young Ukrainian fashion designer only started her label a year and a half ago. Since then, she has taken part in Mercedes-Benz Kiev Fashion Days and was shortlisted for Harper’s Bazaar Fashion Forward 2013. Karimova described the collection as a “combination of power and tenderness”, adding: “Clean cut and lapidary silhouette, traditional and new technologies (handcrafted shoes, 3d modeling of clothes and 3d modeled and printed bracelet) – is the underline of this collection.” Images via This Is Paper


Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe in Berlin by Peter Eisenman

Nestled between the Brandenburg gate and Potsdamer Platz, sits the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe– around 2700 concrete slabs arranged in a grid-like pattern to remember the Jewish victims of the Holocaust. The concrete plinths are arranged on a 19,000 sq m sloping site that the public are able to walk through. Some of the stones tower above head-height, creating claustrophobic gaps and crevices, while others are waist-height and can be used as seats. The slabs contain a steel reinforcement and were manufactured by pouring an extra-hard concrete mixture into specially-produced steel forms offsite. The concrete also has a special coating to combat the graffiti seen across much of the city, making the memorial seem calm and serene compared to its surroundings. Peter Eisenman explained the idea behind the design: “The enormity and scale of the horror of the Holocaust is such that any attempt to represent it by traditional means is inevitably inadequate … Our memorial attempts to present a new idea of memory as distinct from nostalgia … We can only …


Hyttgårdsparken, Sweden by 42 architects

My former Bartlett tutor’s latest project has been featured on BDonline. To read the article in full see: or see below. 42 architects has completed the first phase for a new 6000sqm activity park in Falun, Sweden. Hyttgardsparken is situated in a Unesco World Heritage Site surrounded by a former copper mine and old workers cottages. 42 architects was first approached in 2006 to build a new activity park with a focus on skateboarding. The first phase of the project features a sunken concrete landscape for skateboarders. 42 architects consulted local skateboarders in Falun and designed a skatepark with a focus on street skating more similar to normal city terrain.,On one side of the park, there are stairs, blocks and rails, while on the other side towards the former copper mine, there are sloping banked surfaces and carved forms. Johan Berglund, founder of 42 architects said: “We felt that many of the parks that are built around the world are very alien to their environment, and as architects we felt we had a responsibility …

The Castelvecchio, Verona by Carlo Scarpa

The Castelvecchio, Verona by Carlo Scarpa

Having seen a wealth of Carlo Scarpa buildings and sculptures in Venice, I was starting overdose on Scarpa architecture. The Castelvecchio, however, a museum located within the complex of a solid red brick fortress on the banks of Verona’s river Adige, only secured by love for all things Scarpa. Restored by Carlo Scarpa from 1957 to 1975, the museum has all the hallmarks of a classic Scarpa building, with carefully considered details ranging from the stands and fixtures holding up the Byzantine art, to the apertures and openings that mark the meetings of different materials. The main wow-factor for me appeared after the initial series of gallery rooms, where a balancing act of ramps and staircases attach the gallery to the fortress wall and bridge across the river. Here a statue of a Lord on a horse, Cangrande- the greatest of the della Scala family, the Lords of Verona in the fourteenth century- stands precariously on a landing strip looking over the Giardini below. Scarpa demolished part of a barracks added by the occupying French …

National Tourist Route, Havoysund by Reiulf Ramstad Architects

I know myself how appealing the landscape of Norway is. Towards the extreme north of Norway, near the Arctic Ocean, it’s barren, inhospitable but wildly beautiful. This is where Oslo-based practice Reiulf Ramstad Architects has designed a winding concrete walkway to enhance the experience of walking from the roadside down to the seaside. Although a little tedious, you could just simply walk from A to B, the new addition re-focuses awareness of the visitor on the landscape and opens up the shoreline to all ages, with the addition of ramps, built-in benches and tables. Images: Reiulf Ramstad Architects 

JOH 3 by J. Mayer H. Architects

JOH 3 by J. Mayer H. Architects

I recently wrote a post about J. Mayer H. Architects’ recent work in Georgia (here). The Berlin-based practice have now realised a residential building in their hometown, situated between Museum Island and Friedrichstrasse. The most striking feature of the building is the sculptural design of the suspended slat facade that envelops the glass; the pattern mimicking the natural shapes of the green interior courtyard within. This is something that has become something of a trademark for the architects. The quirky pattern in this building is even extended to the tiling of the bathrooms. Images