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publicat in: Uncategorized // Publicata pe 19.10.2018





1. Penda's Residential Tower in Tel Aviv

2. Shanghai Art Gallery

3. Fjordenhus: Castle-like office building

4. Emiliano Zapata 167: Apartment Building in Mexico


Inspiration is all around us – from the environment up to the tangible assets. And even the experts of planning and designing, architects, need inspiration for their projects. We have gathered 4 buildings from all around the world to serve as souce of inspiration for your projects, or at least, to be aware of the fact that these days, there is no barrier between the harsh natural materials and the fluid shapes you draw.


1. Penda's Residential Tower in Tel Aviv

Penda, an architecture and design studio designed a residential tower in Tel Aviv City, consisting of brick arches used in exterior designs, waterfall-shaped terraces with influences from Bauhaus school and architectural elements of the Old Town. The building has approximately 116 meters height and will include apartments with one bedroom and also apartments with up to 4 rooms, as well as double-height penthouses. For this project, Penda gave up the modern glass tower for a traditional form and material to match the Mediterranean climate of Tel Aviv. The entire location has approximately 17,500 square meters and is defined by its waterfall arches – elements with historical roots of shelter in architecture – and a friendly ambience, perceived as you enter the building. Alongside stratified terraces, the rhythmic structure creates a facade that reflects the vitality of the city, thus obtaining a balance between exposure and shelter.



"I basically looked into the past and analyzed the techniques of building from previous generations, applied in Mediterranean regions. Designing in a warm climate does not mean adding glass facades alongside an area where you are supposed to use air conditioning all the time. It is about creating a design with a view on one hand, and on the other, creating a minor aperture towards the sunlight. The arch is the perfect expression of such an approach, improving the structural capacities of buildings and energy performance at the same time. "

Chris Precht, Co-Founder, Penda



The tower is designed as a modular system, allowing the prefabrication of structural elements with low costs in construction and maintenance. The building geometry is influenced by the Bauhaus movement, focusing on exposure, clarity and a rationality expressed in a clear language of lines and arches. The inspiration for the exterior decoration project with traditional brick belongs to the old center of Tel Aviv, conveying an old, new, yet timeless air to the projec. The residential tower is a daring creative, project with local inspiration, but at the same time it was imagined as a building that would work on the ideal parameters considering the external factors. The construction of this building will start in 2019.



2. Shanghai Art Gallery

The next project has everything it needs: inspiration, focus on natural materials, technology, symbiosis between traditional and modern, old and new. The Archi-Union Architects architecture studio in China programmed robots for designing the facade of a Shanghai art gallery. The architects designed a curved facade for this building, made of gray-black brick. Precisely for this, the architects employed robots. The new building includes areas for art exhibitions, events and workshops. The Archi-Union Architects, with previous experience in designing a contemporary art center with curved concrete walls, imagined this design by combining traditional materials – brick, wood – with contemporary robotics.



The space was imagined on the structure of an existing building, later reinforced and having the benefit of an already perfect plan, namely an open space able to be customized as an exhibition space. Part of the gray brick was rescued from the old building and reused at the main entrance for being able to offer another perspective. Also, the entrance was arranged in a slightly curved opening, having around a fluid brick shape set against the walls. This complex shape was generated with a computer software, subsequently used for programming robots that placed the bricks in the correct position for creating that fluid, sculptural surface.



"The deterioration of these old bricks, along with the stretched surface of the curved walls, reveals a link between humans and these bricks, machines and constructions, design and culture.”


The roof was replaced by a waved wooden one, underlining the sense of harmony and balance in space and for every used material. Assisted by technology, brick seems more than just a raw material.


3. Fjordenhus: Castle-like office building

A strong Eastern wind blowing through the ground floor of the newest works, the Danish artist Olafur Eliasson enjoys the low flow that reveals the algae trapped on the building bricks. Finally, it looks like a living building, as if it was raised from the water. Fjordenhus rises from the waters of the Vejle Fjord, in the Danish part of the Iutlanda Peninsula. This building is the headquarters of Kirk Kapital – the company owned by three descendants of the Lego founder – and the first building designed by Eliasson, with a Berlin based studio. It seems that all those years he spent working on hundreds of installations, solar lamps and art works were not in vain. The artist, along with the rest of his team, managed to transform years of experiments into physical movement, light, nature, perception and experience of space, in a building that is both an artwork as well as a perfectly functional architectural structure.



Fjordenhus is a 28-metre high brick construction, made of four interconnected cylinders, with carved spaces of them, circular at one end and elliptical to the other, creating curves and arched windows. Rooms are curved, stretched over water and decorated with all sorts of installations imagined by Olafur. Beyond the architectural aspects, this is a daring project, in which modern thinking and innovative spaces combined perfectly with a traditional material such as brick, which gives the safety and stability for an above water building.



4. Emiliano Zapata 167: Apartment Building in Mexico

This project proposes a building of 25 apartments in Mexico, between 82 and 91 sqm, divided indoor by 5 central terraces. Each terrace separates the common area from the private area of each apartment and these areas are closed by a brick network that helps to ensure privacy and ventilation for each space.



The name, Emiliano Zapata 167, honors a leader of the Mexican Revolution. The building operates as a single tower, with only one elevator and one emergency ladder. Each floor has 5 apartments, accessible through an open corridor. All spaces have ventilation and natural light; obtained by the design of red bricks that also form the concept of this project. The entire building was conceived with durable natural materials – red brick for exterior and interior, wood, natural stone and plants.



From a simple basic building material to exterior design, traditional brick assumes new forms while shaping fully functional concept – buildings. On the other hand, decorative brick conveys a rustic but modern air into the spaces, which will never go out of fashion. PIATRAONLINE’s portfolio includes many projects with decorative bricks from natural stone – sandstone. A durable and resistant material, with a special aesthetic conveyed by the beauty of natural stone. Decorative brick is used for both interior and exterior decoration projects, withstanding perfectly any external factor. If you think that impossible is possible, then your project can also be inspirational and brick can turn into an artwork.

Decorative brick: Discover 4 Inspirational buildings
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