Italian tile company Casalgrande Padana is collecting sculptures. Five years ago they commissioned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma to build the Casalgrande Ceramic Cloud near their headquarters. This year, Kuma’s public sculpture is joined by another, the Casalgrande Ceramic Crown, a 25-meter tower designed by architect Daniel Libeskind.
The twisting form is clad in a special tile designed by Casalgrande and Studio Libeskind, Fractile. In addition to its eye-catching geometric pattern, Fractile is a self-cleaning ceramic that also, according to Libeskind, “reduces environmental pollution by purifying the air.” Casalgrande states that Kuma’s earlier Cloud has similar self-cleaning properties.
The company states of the work:
Casalgrande Ceramic Crown bears an unusual three-dimensional structure that experiments with innovative new uses for the latest generation of ceramic parts. Clad entirely with Fractile porcelain stoneware tiles with a raised fractal motif, the structure surges upwards in a spiral measuring 25 metres in height. The shape is pure compositional expression and emphasizes the verticality of a sort of volumetric projection, combining an almost hand-sketched feel with unrivaled construction expertise to show that an ecologically friendly, flexible material such as porcelain stoneware can be used in even the most unexpected context.
Devised as a ventilated façade anchored to an extremely slender, sleek steel structure, The Crown is destined to become a new architectural benchmark in the area around the Casalgrande Padana headquarters.
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