To celebrate the launch of ArchDaily Materials, our new product catalog, we’ve rounded up 10 awesome projects from around the world that were inspired by one material: concrete. Check out the projects after the break…
One of the first realized projects in Zaha’s career, the Vitra Fire Station in Germany uses concrete planes that bend, tilt, and break according to the conceptual, dynamic forces connecting landscape and architecture.
Cathedral of Brasilia / Oscar Niemeyer
The structure of this Brazilian cathedral, created by one of the great concrete masters, is made up of sixteen parabolic concrete columns reaching up towards the sky. The columns integrate with the stained glass windows, which are different shades of blue, white and brown.
Crematorium Baumschulenweg / Shultes Frank Architeckten
A German crematorium comprised of simple boxes and columns of concrete. The building includes a slat-steered casing of glass and allows light to filter into the ceremonial halls from the concrete column tops.
Bagsværd Church / Jørn Utzon
The unassuming exterior of this church in Denmark merely hints at the stirring forms inside. It is clad in white precast concrete panels and glazed white tiles attached to a frame. Utzon positioned the reflective glazed tiles to relate to the sinuous concrete curves of the interior sanctuary.
Salk Institute / Louis Kahn
The Salk Institute in California is one of the great architectural masterpieces, both an “intellectual retreat” and an inspiring environment for scientific research. The concrete was poured using a technique studied in Roman architecture. In order to attain a warm glow in the concrete, Kahn allowed no finishing touches once the concrete was set.
Brufe Social Center / Imago
This Portuguese social center was designed as a building that is turned inside out. That concrete block form is carved out by openings that illuminate the interior space and courtyard within.
Tama Art University Library / Toyo Ito
The randomly placed concrete arches in this library, located in the suburbs of Tokyo, Japan, were designed to allow individuals to easily flow through different spaces and have a variety of views.
Igualada Cemetery / Enric Miralles + Carme Pinos
A new type of cemetery found in Spain that was designed as an earthwork blending into the landscape. The gabion walls and the worn/aged concrete evoke the hard and rough landscape of the surrounding hills.
Grisons College of Education / Pablo Horváth
A concrete structure in combination with roughly-cut formwork make up this college in Switzerland. The column-free space and smooth white surfaces allow light to reflect far into the interior.
Sunset Chapel / BNKR Arquitectura
Clients asked that this Mexican chapel take full advantage of spectacular views and that the sun set exactly behind the altar cross. The team worked the concrete form to make the chapel look like “just another” colossal boulder atop the mountain.