Yesterday it started snowing here and already in the afternoon the landscape had flipped from earthy autumn colours to white. Everything, the grass, the roads, the buildings look different, especially those white prefab concrete block apartments now so ubiquitous in our fair nordic capitol. And last night I couldn’t help think about how it would be great if buildings could change colour to suit the weather, a white building in summer, maybe turning yellow in autumn and finishing red in winter, before blossoming again for spring . Whole neighbourhoods could slowly transform in waves of complex changing geometries of colour. Maybe not as crazy as it sounds, as paramagnetic paint is being developed that with a flick of the switch can change colour. This article talks about the paint in regard to automobiles but why not buildings? It would really open up a whole new way in which building facades could interact with the landscape and with people. (via)
Textile and Architecture can make good bedfellows. The work of SARC Architects has recently incorporated patterned designs by the textile artist Outi Martikainen adding an extra depth to their walls. The Kone headqurters for example has three different glass print designs which combine to give a depth and artistry to the side wall double skinned elevations, which would otherwise be quite plain. In the Oulu Faculty of Medical Science heat formed polyester felt acoutic panels have been designed by her to great effect. Hopefully Architects and Artists can collaborate more in this kind of way incorporating some Art into the Architecture rather than say just dedicating a sculpture in the parking lot outside.
Buildings Outi has worked on with SARC;
Kone HQ in Espoo, Faculty of Medical Science in Oulu, Sonera in Vallila, Offices in Pasila, Expoo2000 Hanover.
See also (fabric concrete)
Publisher: MFA From Wood to Architecture presents 17 projects from around Finland which use wood in different ways. Wood is perhaps the fundamental building material of Finnish architecture and recently has enjoyed a new life being used more and more again not only in traditional ways but also as this book shows in modern uses as a tecnical product, eg glulam beams, cladding or premade insulated panels, and the projects here show off almost all of these uses in recent Finnish Architecture. The exhibition, accompanying the book runs for only a few more days but the book adds four well written essays about wood more on which I will write another time. The book is excellent with the summer houses and the KÃ¤rsÃ¤mÃ¤ki wooden church in particular the pick of them. Note I can’t locate this book for sale at amazon.co.uk or .com. Go to mfa website to order, the text is both in english and finnish. photos of exhibition and press photos below (here for full size)
For the Architect or product designer it can still be quite hard to track down products on the web if you don’t know exactly what you are looking for, but one website materialexplorer is really useful. You can search by type or property (if you want something soft and fluffy for instance!) or how about trying to track down those funky tiles that mvrdv used in their last project, then just type in the arcitects name. Only a couple of problems, you have to register, and the database doesn’t appear so large at the moment. I think they are specialising in new materials and definitely better for product and interior designers. The registering is not all bad either, you can build up a neat folder system of materials, forinstance for differet projects.
A really nice idea well executed it will become more and more useful as more products are added. Check it out. photos left to right are; sensacell an interactive led surface mountable almost anywhere. liquidfloor walk on the tiles, the liquid inside moves and swirls around. plywall element by Finnish designer Jouko KÃ¤rkkÃ¤inen. vectogramm for transferring images onto sheet materials (concretes, mdf, plastics) by means of milling technology. This is so cool!