The world’s population is growing and concentrating in cities. This is a process that started with the industrial revolution two hundred years ago and is still on-going in an intense way. A 2011 UN report on human settlements estimates that 70% of the world’s population will be living in cities by 2050. In this context, cities need to develop an economic and environmentally sustainable growth in order to improve the quality of life for all. Cities will have a major role dealing with the fundamental challenges of the 21st century: climate change and other environmental threats; high consumption of non-renewable resources; economic development; growing populations; and ageing infrastructures. Continue reading
BRICK – the exhibition
On 24 May 2007, the exhibition ‘Brick’ will open at the Groot Handelsgebouw in Rotterdam during the manifestation Rotterdam 2007, City of Architecture. The exhibition will highlight the results of the Brick project that was carried out over a three-year period at the European Ceramic Workcentre. The architecture project Brick was aimed at product innovation. The .ekwc wanted to stimulate the technical and artistic development of the manufacture and application of brick as a construction material. Architects, designers and artists from both the Netherlands and abroad have been working on the development of a new type of brick since 2005. The .ekwc expects to be able to use this to provide a new stimulus to the application of brick and subsequently the ‘brick appearance’ of the Netherlands. The underlying goal is that the centre wishes to demonstrate that input from various disciplines (architecture, art and design) can provide an additional impetus to the desired development.
»I was never really interested in brick«, says Jan Schabert (1967): »A dull material that swallows up quite a lot of energy in production. But still, the extruded bricks with large air tubes do contain acceptable isolation qualities.« It brought him to the idea to develop a brick that does not only contain excellent isolation qualities, but can also adopt other architectural and climatological functions.
It marks the approach by the German architect who collaborates with his colleague Martina Günther under the name »Architectur und so weiter« (Architecture and so on). The name especially illustrates their broad approach, which is not limited to the design of buildings and interiors, but is also aimed at doing research and developing concepts. Both architects completed a course in architecture at the Technical University of Munich and have a broad interest in ecological designs.