Milan diary: materials in focus, ar-enhanced architecture, and new glass possibilities

April 19, 2024
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Despite the wind and some chilly (for Milan) temperatures, the day was hot with places to be and things to see. At the Interni Cross Vision exhibition set in the University of Milan courtyard, temperature quite literally took centre stage at Roca’s ‘Sparking Change’ installation. Designed by Mario Cucinella Architects, the installation captures the circular thinking that went into the recent launch of the world’s first electric tunnel kiln at Roca Group’s production plant in Gmunden, Austria.

Mario Cucinella Architects designed a modular, circular 3D-printed ceramic exhibition for Roca.

Comprising 1,200 3D-printed ceramic blocks the installation illustrates the progressive temperatures required to fire ceramic products in the newly launched kiln. Not only circular in its material use – with components made of both virgin clay and recycled ceramics sourced from Roca’s production of bathroom components – the modular structure is self-supporting and dry-assembled, allowing for easy disassembly. The space is meant to serve as a place for visitors to relax, converse and socialize – I even saw children making use of the colourful space for play.