Tile of Spain Cerámica at RIBA North

Tile of Spain Cerámica at RIBA North, Architecture-Interior Design Liverpool Exhibition, Event, Images

Tile of Spain Cerámica at RIBA North

International Architectural Exhibition in Liverpool, England

14 Sep 2017

Tile of Spain Cerámica at RIBA North

ECAlab inspires ceramicists to look to the future at RIBA North’s Cerámica

Cerámica, a ground-breaking new exhibition at RIBA North supported by Tile of Spain / ASCER, explores the future use of ceramics and technology in architecture. From 28 October 2017, a series of full-scale installations by ECAlab will enliven RIBA’s new centre on the Liverpool waterfront

Tile of Spain Ceramica at RIBA North
A prototype of an innovative ceiling installation utilising 200 ceramic cones that are digitally designed and created by ECAlab will be on display at Cerámica

Ceramics have a bright future as a high-performance, environmentally friendly and beautiful building material for architecture and design – a conclusion that ECAlab (Environmental Ceramics for Architecture Laboratory) and their collaborators at ASCER (The Spanish Ceramic Tile Manufacturers’ Association) have innovatively demonstrated in a 6-year research project involving numerous students, universities, industry partners and internationally respected ceramicists. The results of their experimental and dynamic research will be on show at RIBA North, the RIBA’s new national architecture centre on the Liverpool waterfront, which will highlight the future use of ceramics and technology in architecture.

From 28 October 2017 to 10 February 2018, Cerámica will highlight how traditional ceramic techniques and digital engineering processes can be used together to produce more meaningful and sustainable architectural elements. Using new technologies, British and international ceramicists have created a series of ceramic ceilings and walls that show different vernacular languages, reflecting local heritage. Highlights of the exhibition include full-scale prototypes of light-diffusing facades and ceilings.

‘Ceilings, facades and walls may seem rather banal,’ says Director of RIBA North, Suzy Jones, ‘but this exhibition showcases how we could inject beautiful, hand-crafted products into our buildings and spaces.’ Yet it is not just a display of what has been achieved in the collaborative process to date believes Dr Rosa Urbano Gutiérrez and Amanda Wanner, founders of ECAlab and Senior Lecturers in Architecture at Liverpool University and Leeds Beckett University respectively. ‘The Cerámica exhibition with RIBA North is a starting point for us,’ explains Gutiérrez, ‘and we are using it as a tool to generate new directions and new discussions.’

The exhibition is supported by Tile of Spain-ASCER along with Liverpool University and Leeds Beckett University. And as the creative minds of industry and academia work together to bridge disciplines, it is an exciting and positive result that the outcomes of this exhibition will inform the development of viable architectural products. Spanish tile manufacturers have played an important role in exploring the future sustainability of ceramics and their technical performance and so ECAlab’s research has often been presented at their annual industry tile fair.

As well as some very diverse creative input by some well known ceramic artists, the RIBA North exhibition will also be accompanied by a film explaining the experimental design methodologies explored at the ECAlab and is opened to the public on 28th October with a tour/talk by ECAlab’s founder Dr Rosa Urbano Gutiérrez.

Tile of Spain Ceramica at RIBA North

Tile of Spain Ceramica at RIBA North
Dr Rosa Urbano Gutiérrez, founder of ECAlab, with a student in the lighting lab; student Nojan Adami and an instructor casting a ceramic cone for the ceiling installation that will feature at RIBA North’s new show

As part of the ongoing discussion around Cerámica, a number of artists’ workshops and a seminar Moulding Futures Symposium, will contribute further to the debate on the future for ceramics within architecture. And as Professor Stuart Walker, professor of design for sustainability, says: ‘Design for sustainability demands a new outlook. We are at the beginning of a new era, one limited only by the human imagination. The Cerámica exhibition offers an inspiring vision of this potential future.’

About Tile of Spain
Tile of Spain / ASCER is the voice of the Spanish tile industry, encompassing more than 100 tile manufacturers. Renowned worldwide for an inspiring blend of aesthetic and technical innovation, Spanish tiles draw on a rich heritage of skill and creativity, while remaining at the cutting edge of design. Since 2004, Tile of Spain has set up and continuously supports ceramic studies programmes at leading schools of architecture – University of Darmstadt, The Harvard University, The University of Liverpool, as well as top architecture schools in Barcelona, Alicante, Valencia, Madrid and Castellon.

As well as teaching their own students, the network of Ceramic Tile Studies Departments in Spanish universities promotes and educates to a broader audience through lectures, visits, exhibitions and publishing material that fosters understanding of ceramics and the diversification of how they are used in the field of architecture. ASCER’s collaborations abroad deserve special mention. In Harvard (GSD) in the US (since 2007) two research projects have been undertaken that will analyse the industry in terms of customization and the sustainability of ceramic. Professors Christoph Reinhart and Martin Bechthold guide students in the development of prototypes resulting from this research.

Tile of Spain / ASCER has a tradition of hosting professional seminars for the architectural community in the UK and around the world and each year the prestigious Tile of Spain Awards honour the creative use of ceramics in architecture, interior design and student work.

Website: Tile of Spain

Tile of Spain Cerámica at RIBA North images / information received 140917


To see all listed projects on a single map please follow this link.




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European Copper Architecture Awards

Stirling Prize




Architecture in Spain

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Design: Alberto Campo Baeza
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photo : Javier Callejas

Museo de al Memoria de Andalucía

Merida Factory Youth Movement, western Spain
Design: Jose Selgas, Lucia Cano, architects
Merida Building
image from selgascano

Merida Youth Factory

Centro Niemeyer, Avilés Oscar Niemeyer architect
Centro Niemeyer
photo : Ángel Navarrete

Centro Niemeyer

Website: Architecture

Spanish Architects

Pritzker Prize

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Tile of Spain Cerámica at RIBA North

Website: RIBA North