Experimental designers making furniture out of concrete

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The Financial Times writes a brilliant piece on “designers making furniture out of concrete”.

“Traditionally associated with car parks and tower blocks, concrete is increasingly finding its way into our homes. Today’s furniture makers are using the industrial material to make a wide range of objects, from dining chairs and tables”, they write.  To do so, designers often replace the gravel and sand used in conventional concrete with high-tech materials, such as fibreglass or steel-reinforcing micro fibres.  In contrast to how Modernist architects used concrete in the mid-20th century to build large external structures, today’s designers are focusing on how it can be crafted into furniture. They are experimenting with the shape of fabric forms that are difficult to replicate on a larger scale and the results demonstrate the material’s versatility.

For anyone who has seen concrete at a construction site – thick slabs with stems of steel used as reinforcement – the collection’s silhouettes seem impossibly slender. But therein lies the allure of fibre reinforcement, which allows concrete to take precise patterns and forms, transforming a cold building material into a thin, elegant structure with incredible strength.  Designers agree that trial and error is a big part of developing concrete furnishings for the home. But with new design tools and experienced fabricators willing to collaborate, they are working with an exciting bag of tricks, one that may help concrete find yet untold potential in the home.

More from the article here: https://www.ft.com/content/55f1979e-eefa-11e2-9269-00144feabdc0

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