Today we’re looking at designs created with concrete. “It’s too severe to be inspirational” I hear you say. Well, let me prove you wrong!
Many architects and engineers use the ability of reinforced concrete to produce structures of surprising lightness which, despite being made of masonry, barely appear to touch the ground.
Félix Candela was one of the earliest and best to focus on arches and vaults in the form of parabolas, efficiently directing the structural forces inside the material, which makes this 1958 Mexico City restaurant called Los Manatiales lighter still.
Cohen Chapel in Switzerland, built in 2017, both protects against the elements and invites elements in, with beams of light streaming down onto simple bench seats, surrounded by stratified concrete walls with a textural feeling, open to the sky at the top.
The unusual design of the chapel is a hideaway from the mountainous countryside, a way to focus on more spiritual concerns.
In the Louvre Abu Dhabi, light-colored concrete blocks seem to float weightlessly, while the stainless-steel-and-aluminum dome forms star-shaped patterns when the light shines through in a dazzling effect for this 2017 storied art museum in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates by Atelier Jean Nouvel.
Another of Jean Nouvel’s buildings is made of 539 disks, forming the walls and ceilings. Glass-fiber-reinforced concrete cladding consists of 76,000 panels, made from 3,000 master molds, completed in 2019.
Limited window glazing is deep-set, shading openings from the intense sun and protecting the art inside the National Museum of Qatar, in Doha, Qatar. Modern, bursting with style, uplifting, and made with concrete.
Kimball Starr designs stylish homes throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and Lake Tahoe, inspired by some of the most stunning architecture across the world. Contact her today for a socially-distanced in-person or remote consultation!