Cast Concrete

This week’s readings broached the subject about the innate qualities of concrete and how designers and architects have been trying to discover and pin-point exactly what makes concrete concrete and it’s “correct” application. This concept was widened further in class with the discussion about how concrete and other “liquid-to-stone” materials are moving towards commonalities in certain qualities and functions. But what sets concrete uniquely apart from all other building materials is that it is limited by the necessity of the casting process.

It is this limitation that has also made its “correct” use so illusive. When a substance takes on the texture, and in some manners the properties of what it has been cast in, the possibilities are almost as many as there are viable formworks. Concrete has been used in so many different contexts: from roadways, to building structure, furniture, jewelry, sculpture, tableware, heavy weights and counter tops. The list goes on and on. It has become the ultimate adaptable substance.

With research continually discovering concrete’s many personalities, we have just scratched the surface of how the material can be used. The search for the “correct” use of concrete has only shown us that it either doesn’t exist, or there are too many.


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