Concrete Jungle – where dreams are made…

 

I came face to face with concrete very early on in life. And not by choice.

 

At age 2, (in true ‘red bull’ spirit) I attempted to ride my tricycle down a flight of stairs …. and laded face first onto the concrete landing.

 

I split my head open and still today have a scar on my forehead. (No.. its not cool like Harry Potter’s…its actually blue in colour and just acts as a daily reminder of my early battler days).

 

Concrete is commonly perceived as dull, cold and drab. It is often associated with depressing industrial buildings that lack any emotion or soul. I beg to differ. I believe that when applied thoughtfully, concrete can be very poetic. Some of my favourite buildings have been created purely out of concrete – creating strong lines, which command attention. There is nothing soft about pure concrete.

 

Every building in some way or form utilises concrete for structural purposes. I just love the way concrete can step out from behind the  (metaphorical) ‘walls’ and become the main feature. The architectural underdog prevails!

 

Concrete fits perfectly with an Industrial design style.  Exposed concrete combined with timber and copper creates a distinctly urban feel.

 

Whether it is polished or finished, I love the rawness of concrete.

 

Concrete is not loved by all. Treehugger blogger Llyod Alter argues that; “Concrete is just about the worst material going; it is heavy. And in a world where we worry about our carbon footprint, the manufacture of cement is responsible for 5% of the Carbon dioxide produced every year”. It is an interesting take and reinforces that every material has its own pros & cons when it comes to application. (Read More Here)

 

However, of late, concrete seems to be transcending the realm of architecture and sweeping the world of fashion and accessories. Concrete is inherently a very versatile material. Subsequently, from bags to jewellery to vases, concrete is increasingly being used as a form of artistic expression.

 

My friend Mel’s family owns a chain of pubs in Melbourne and they just renovated their fifth Melbourne venue ; “Prahan Hotel’.  Designed by Techne Architects, it is a concrete lovers dream – 17 concrete pipes, weighing between four and seven tonnes each, climb the side of the pub’s classic 1940s facade. Read more about it here on the Cool Hunter. I must to book my next trip to Melbourne ASAP – I need to see this!

 

 

 

concrete design

concrete design

“The use of large stacked concrete pipes for the street façade of the addition struck a chord for multiple reasons,” state the architects. “They have a depth and can be interactive, they have a dramatic, sculptural quality, they reference existing internal circular motifs and they suggest stacked kegs or barrels.” (Via Domus).

In anticipation of my visit to the world’s concrete jungle (aka NYC), I want to spread my love for concrete it is many forms.

concrete design

 

Concrete is sweeping the lighting world. MInimalist designs with clean lines. I love the above lighting – Heavy is a collection of thin-walled, cast concrete lights by Benjamin Hubert available as a pendant, desk or wall light.

(Image via Freshome)

concrete

A Douglas Friedman creation! Love, love, love that concrete staircase – although you wouldn’t want to stack it…

(Image via Pinterest)

 

 

 

 

 

 

concrete design

(Image via Freshome)

Concrete tiling adds texture to a space. The above Concrete Collection is designed by photographer Tom Haga who photographs raw and refined concrete walls, raw cinder block walls and even graffiti, in locations right across Norway. The high-resolution images are then transformed into wallpaper.

concrete chair

 

Not very comfortable…

(Image via Pinterest)

 

concrete architecture

Studio Seilern Architects

(Image via  backstage.worldarchitecturenews.com)

concrete ring

 

Gorgeous concrete rings (wouldn’t want to be punched in the face with one of these!)

(mage via designboom.com)

concrete

Concrete doesn’t have to be cold…

(Image via micasaessucasa.tumblr.com)

concrete bag

I am secretly in love with this concrete bag… Ivanka Design Studio. Gorgeous.

(Image via Design Milk) 

concrete

Gorgeous application of concrete.

(Image via riazzoli.blogspot.com.es)

concrete nespresso

Israeli designer Shmuel Linski created an espresso machine called Espresso Solo using concrete as the primary material. He wanted to make a desirable consumer product for the kitchen from concrete to complement the other more typical uses of concrete in our kitchens such as walls or countertops.

(Image via design-milk.com)

concrete jungle

(Image via edificecomplex.tumblr.com)

 

concrete jungle

(Image via archdaily.com)

concrete watch

(Image via dzmitrysamal.com)

concrete bag

Yes, please!

(Image via Pinterest) 

Hopefully I have inspired you to see concrete in a slightly different way. It’s not so boring….I could actually spend hours and hours doing this.

Officially obsessed with concrete. Yes…I am wierd.

Happy Sunday.

N x

 

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