Architects about facades

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Nicole Climanova

The Pantone Institute named the color of the coming year. Usually the color was chosen from the existing palette, this year the employees created a new one.

The color of the year 2022 was named PANTONE 17-3938 Very Peri.

According to Laurie Pressman, vice president of the Pantone Color Institute, "the color of the year reflects what's happening in our global culture," so in a wave of coming out of isolation and at the same time pushing the boundaries of the virtual world, the experts created a new color that combines the "constancy" of blue with the "energy and excitement" of red.

It is kind of new, but you can notice a certain cyclicity in the choice of tone, 4 years ago in 2018 the color of the year was Ultra Violet, and in 2014 - Radiant Orchid.

In architecture, this color is applicable to futuristic forms as a backlighting.

Helix Bridge / Cox Architecture with Architects 61
Helix Bridge / Cox Architecture with Architects 61
Tori Tori Restaurant / Rojkind Arquitectos + ESRAWE Studio
Mathematics: The Winton Gallery / Zaha Hadid Architects
Welcome Gallery / Thomas Roszak Architecture

For me the color Very Peri is softer, more lyrical, more dreamy. It's the reflected light of a sunset in the trim. Hues of lavender, delicate violet, and a peek of pink undertones look particularly effective on white facades and on houses finished in dark steel.

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Maria Krasnova

What is majolica anyway?

In a broad sense, the term is used for all glazed ceramics. Going deeper, a true majolica should be glazed twice. First the first, the background layer for the pattern, and then the transparent glaze on top and baked at high temperature. The implication is that the tiles are patterned, but it can also be a full fill of one color.

I often use majolica mosaics in projects I work on.

Majolica has an uneven surface, so it casts light in different directions, catching my eye. And so it's great to use it as accents on the facade, for this a small amount will be enough.

What areas can be accentuated on a facade?

  • — entrances
  • — window frames
  • — individual panels
  • — cornice
  • — flights of stairs
  • — column inserts

Majolica combines well with matte materials - wood, plaster, brick.

Important! Since with such materials it has a great contrast of texture, the color contrast must be low, it is good if majolica combines the shades of other materials of facade finishing.

It is also necessary to remember about the proportions. More does not always mean better. A good example is the main accent piece above the entryway and the supporting elements above the windows. Or an interstory belt and a panel that crowns the main gable..

Oxana Vatavu

The classic look of the house is relevant at all times, no matter how modern houses with flat roofs try to take the lead. Today I will take apart a recent French château-inspired project I worked on and talk about the techniques I used during the design of the façade.

The first thing to look for is symmetry, one of the main characteristics of a classical heritage. The expressive central risalite with a wide staircase of the main entrance, framed with balusters, immediately sets a solemn tone.

The decor is simultaneously plentiful, but it does not sting the eye, thanks to the fact that it is in a single pastel palette, the contrast of the transition is smoothed as much as possible.

By decor I mean not only window frames or pilasters. The first floor is completely rusticated, and above the openings there are arcs of rustication and volumetric elements, like keystones.

At the corners of the second floor are corner bosses, in support of the first floor rustication.

Going up, I added framing to the dormer windows with semi-circular tympanas, balancing the large number of corners, and graceful brackets on the pilasters.

But since everything is basically the same color, you need different materials to make the façade not look boring.

The ground floor, which is more visible and interacts more with people, is more expensive with natural stone; the second floor is separated by a belt and plastered, and the risalita above the entrance portal is tiled.

Alex Vatavu

The house, by Indian Architects, which I particularly liked. How well they managed to combine modern architecture and pleasing patterns! Two years ago I wrote a post about an ethno-trend that seems to be emerging. This house is a fitting illustration.

A lot of vernacular humanized design has been lost and replaced by a unified international approach, where any pattern or pleasing excess is perceived as a crime against the idea of rationality. And of course this approach excluded "old," "naïve" art as a relic, and ethnic design seemed to threaten the globalist project.

I'm all for finding a balance. You don't have to throw the baby out with the water. Corbusier is good, but this radical lacks softness. A house is not only a machine for living, but also a place of aesthetic experience. The house should be pleasant for the child and the old lady, not just the man in the suit. A home should remind us who we are, where we come from, and where we are going.

It's interesting to be in good-quality "historic" buildings. When you get from the context of the decades in which my Soviet rational house is built into the context of the centuries, it's a different scale, a different perspective.

Ethnic style speaks to me on an even more general level - the level of millennia of human history. That's why it's so interesting to be in Indonesian villages. Traditional arts and crafts are alive there while building modern homes to please tourists. This unification gives birth to surprisingly comfortable and beautiful spaces.

Native patterns, carvings, weaving, give such nice filler.

Here are some details in the arch review on this house:

Oxana Vatavu

The choice of tones for the façade design depends on the customer's taste preferences. Both can look equally interesting and stylish.

In this project, for example, the range of tones is quite large, but all four variants look bright and complete and absolutely appropriate.

I added contrasting window décor and bent ornaments on the gables for expressiveness here.
The light shades look fresh, open and welcoming.
And here I highlighted the bay window with a richly textured stone.
The deep gray may seem gloomy, but I think it fits the architecture of this house very well.

But you have to remember that a darker color will heat up more in the sun, which means the temperature inside will also rise in hot weather.

Also, saturated colors are more susceptible to fading.

Another important nuance - shades, even if in the project, sketch, visualization you are in full delight with the chosen color, in reality the selected color will be a little different, so you need to do test painting materials.

Natalia Puziricova

An interesting house, at the intersection of country and half-timbered styles.

One unusual detail is the color of the thermal wood beams on top of the façade.

In the traditional version of half-timbered houses they are usually dark.

In this project I chose white, which brings lightness and refreshes the façade.

By using decorative beams and alternating two colors of plaster in the decoration of the second floor, the asymmetric windows on the main gable were masked, and their complete absence on the side façade. And the use of diagonal fragments allowed us to combine the carport with the overall image of the house.

Tatiana Gonchar

Recently we wrote a post about glass bricks and glass blocks and how they are experiencing a new round of popularity, including their use in exterior finishes.

Here's another impressive example of their use on the facade.

A restaurant called Artisans Ayutthaya in Bangkok.

Here is a very unusual combination of wood and glass blocks. And it was from unsold remnants of the blocks, which were considered unmarketable, that this project began

As the "mortar" of fixing the blocks is a steel frame, which is covered with wood from the outside.

This gives an interesting effect, where the color of the wood is reflected in the glass gaps.

The technology itself is original and seems to have no analogues yet.

Недавно мы писали заметку о стеклянных кирпичах и стеклоблоках, о том как они переживают новый виток популярности, в том числе в использовании во внешней отделке.

Вот еще один впечатляющий пример их применения на фасаде.

Здание ресторана Artisans Ayutthaya в Бангкоке.

Здесь очень необычное сочетание дерева и стеклоблоков. Причем именно с нераспроданных остатков блоков, признанных неликвидом, начался этот проект.

В качестве “раствора” скрепляющего блоки выступает стальной каркас, который и закрыт снаружи деревом.

Это дает интересный эффект, когда цвет дерева отражается в стеклянных промежутках.

Сама технология оригинальна и кажется еще не имеет аналогов.

Nicole Climanova

A bright, colorful façade of the Ecuadorian pavilion at the Milan exhibition.

What do you think it's finished with? Solar panels, metal or vinyl siding?

No. This is an unusual way to finish a facade with anodized aluminum chains from the Spanish company Kriskadecor.

Until recently, the use of such chains was available only for the interior.

During the reconstruction of the famous Gaudi house Casa Batlló, aluminum chains were also used in the interior design.

Now there is a variant for the facade. Among the main characteristics are the lack of conductivity, non-combustibility, resistance to rust, acids and oxidation.

It is possible to adjust the finish to any size and design, reproduce images or patterns.

The facade of a house in Milan.

It's also a cool tool for shading. See how you can use it.

Opacity from 40% to 60% when light falls at an angle of 90º.

Oxana Vatavu

I'm sharing a tip from a recent project.

The subject of my embarrassment was the blank side wall on the second floor. It was too knocked out and looked disproportionate, so I put false shutters on it to simulate a window opening. This made the façade more harmonious and connected.

And to smooth out the impression of different-level additions to the house, the basement stone rises to the walls in a few places.

Another option that came to my mind was the stylization in the form of a half-timbered house. This way the house looks more austere and collected, also because of the cooler gray color. The decorative beams on the façade match the wooden railings on the porch.

I don't even know which option I like better, but the customer has already made up his mind, he likes the first option better.

Nicole Climanova

The first building with a Corten steel facade appeared in Russia.

This is the Ferrum Business Center in St. Petersburg, on the site of the former machine-building plant Rossiya.

What's remarkable about this material? It is a composite alloy, very resistant to corrosion and extremely strong, also called "eternal" steel.

It has a velvety texture and a distinctive rusty red patina. The secret is that its dense oxide film (rust) acts as a protective shell, preventing further water penetration into the metal. Resistance to weathering is especially important in the St. Petersburg climate.

It is interesting that the patina does not appear immediately, but in the process of use, which means that over time the appearance changes. There are even special preparations for the controlled creation of the oxide film.

In order to give the simple rectangular volume of the office building a distinctive look, the technique of alternating flat and protruding steel modules was used, creating the illusion of weaving around a glass base. And it looks either like floating threads of "warp and weft" fabric or a basket made of birch bark.

The Ferrum BC is only part of a large-scale reconstruction of an industrial area, for example, there is already a building dedicated to the theatrical projects of the artist A. Benoit, known from "Russian Seasons of Diagelev".

The designs were developed by the architectural bureau TCHOBAN VOSS Architekten.

Practical issues of "The Secrets of Beautiful Facades"