to clad or to cover …..

DR Koncerthuset, Copenhagen by Jean Nouvel 2009

 

Cladding, the general term for the external skin of a modern building, comes from the word to clothe - to clad - and with that meaning can be traced back in written English to the 1570s but the use of textiles or, more specifically woven materials, is conventional for clothing but on the exterior of buildings is still relatively unusual in European architecture.

Of course textiles are used extensively inside buildings to control how much sunlight comes into a room or to cover windows for privacy, to stop or at least restrict people outside from looking in, and textiles are used for heat insulation and to dampen down sound, particularly in a large space, but it is less conventional and less common, for some fairly obvious reasons, to use woven materials on the exterior.

read more

Reform at northmodern

Reform was set up in 2014 by Michael Andersen, an engineer who was formerly employed at Bjarke Ingels’s architectural firm BIG, and Jeppe Christensen who comes from an education in marketing and economics but also has a background in carpentry and design.

They identified a need for well designed kitchens and a reasonable price point and came up with the idea to use the base or carcase of the IKEA kitchen range but to add customised work tops and drawer and cupboard fronts … customers plan the kitchen they want and order the cabinets from their local IKEA store and the fronts and tops from Reform.

 

They designed their first Reform make-over kit that they have called Basis (above) with clean, straightforward lines in white with either slot-shaped or round holes for drawer pulls and a very clean, sharp-looking dark green top but the really clever move was to also commission further designs from major Danish architectural firms including BIG, Henning Larsen Architects and Norm Architects and further designs are on the way.

 

 

The kitchen from BIG has a slim dark composite top or that can be in plain steel and there is a choice of white or oak for cupboards and drawer fronts with simple but striking handles formed with a loop of black webbing used for car seat belts.

From Henning Larsen Architects the design comes with oak veneer for the top and ends and fronts with either oak and a band of copper or white with a band of steel.

 

 

A fiber concrete top for the design from Norm Architects can be combined with either a bronze-like front called Tombac or with sawn oak or a very dark smoked oak that brings out the grain of the wood. As with other work from Norm, the design appears at first to be very sharp and industrial but it is designed to soften and wear in with use. The concrete top shown at northmodern had an integral concrete sink … great style.