The concrete effect is one of the hottest design trends of recent years, thanks to the renewed sensitivity towards the urban style, a perfect transposition of modern and contemporary architecture, in which spaces are conceived as dynamic and essential structures, to be enriched and customize with original furnishings and details.
But first, let's dive into the past! The concrete effect owes its diffusion and extraordinary popularity to the architectural trends of the immediate postwar period, first of all Brutalism.
Born in the 50s of the last century in England, and subsequently developed throughout Europe, Brutalism is an immediate solution to the rubble and devastation of the Second World War, and the consequent need to rethink and build new living spaces for the community.
Le Corbusier, with his Unité d'Habitation built in Marseille in 1950, inaugurates a new season for the world’s architecture, and with the quote "L'architecture, c'est, avec des matières brutes, établir des rapports émouvants" officially marks the start of the use of rough and expressive materials such as exposed concrete, used to shape new buildings, residential complexes and structures intended for the public.
Among the most important works, it is impossible not to mention the Royal National Theater and the Barbican Estate in London - the latter located near our London Urban Lab - designed by Denys Lasdun and Chamberlin, Powell and Bon respectively.
The masterpiece of Frank Lloyd Wright: fallingwater (1939), Stewart, Pennsylvania, USA
Moving outside of the United Kingdom, we can still appreciate the austere geometries of the Torre Velasca in Milan, a post-rationalist and brutalist work created by Studio BBPR, an architectural transposition of the Milan atmosphere of the 1960s, or Les Choux in Créteil, a huge urban agglomeration by Gérard Grandval whose shape resembles that of a cauliflower.
Outside of brutalism, the fundamental intuition that allowed the spread of the use of concrete in contemporary architecture had a massive influence in the construction of unique and unrepeatable works. To name a few: Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater, Robert Maillart's Salginatobel Bridge, Eero Saarinen's TWA Terminal and Kurashiki Town Hall, designed by Kenzo Tange.
Prague, Buenos Aires, Paris, London, New York, Belgrade, Tokyo: there is no metropolis in the world in which brutalist architecture and post-rationalism haven’t left a mark, influencing future architectural trends and the world of interior design, and contributing to the birth of the industrial and minimalist style, one of the most currently used for the construction of residential and commercial spaces.
Ceramiche Caesar, which has always been a point of reference for the creation of projects full of personality and in step with the latest trends, offers a wide range of concrete-effect porcelain stoneware solutions to meet the most diverse design needs.
Built, born from the study of the influence of concrete in the world of architecture, has been designed as a renewed solution to create modern interior finishes. Thanks to its captivating colors, developed in a palette that ranges from ivory white to calm and elegant shades of gray, and to the range of large sizes ideal for maximizing visual continuity, Built is the perfect ceramic series to design large scale, adding personality without being a disturbing element for furnishings and other finishes.
Built, born from the study of the influence of concrete in the world of architecture.
And speaking of other materials... concrete-effect stoneware is the perfect trait d'union to build innovative and refined material combinations, such as those developed by Ceramiche Caesar through the Materica and Join collections: if Materica focuses on the mixture of terracotta and concrete, giving life to modern and at the same time charming surfaces, Join - winner of the latest Architizer A + Awards 2020 - focuses on the cement-resin combo, for elegant and never trivial spaces. The presence of different colors and numerous types of finishes expands the possibilities of use and completes the proposal of concrete-effect tiles, to respond to an innovative and constantly evolving market.
In addition to beauty and versatility, what distinguishes all the Caesar collections is the extreme reliability: all the ceramic series are safe, durable, versatile and unalterable, perfectly suitable for different types of use and for the natural covering of domestic and public spaces, hotels, Spa and offices.
The Materica collection revises the traditional style by using warm and earthy shades, and by reinterpretiting them through colder colors designed for contemporary contexts.
Exposed concrete is perfect for giving personality to your spaces, covering them with dynamism and contemporaneity: let yourself be inspired by all the concrete effect proposals signed by Caesar to realize your project!