One look at these striking images and it is easy to see why the Church of the Misericordia in Terranuova Bracciolini, Arezzo, Italy was chosen as one of the winners of the Adi Ceramics Design Award at Cersaie 2014.
The Confraternity of Mercy Church (as, I believe, is the correct English translation) features a warm orange ceramic façade built up using tridimensional hexagonal glazed cotto tiles developed by Tagina.
Designed by the pioneering architectural firm Archea Associates, this religious complex covers an area of 1.910 sq. metres. The church has two levels above ground and one underground. The project’s uniqueness stems from the external covering that clads the the whole building, fully exploiting the dramatic interplay between external light and the architectural form.
Marco Casamonti of Archea Associates designed the Esagona – a tridimensional tile with an hexagonal shape – which was then tailor-made by Atelier Tagina; the research and development laboratory of Italian tile manufacturer Tagina. The tridimensional cladding creates an almost kaleidoscopic effect. This is due to the fact that the glazed porcelain hexagonal tiles cover different areas of the wall in different ways. In some areas the tiles are simply flat, while in others they become miniature prismatic volumes in relief.
The surface of Esagona has a pleasing, yet arresting, optical effect because the glaze interacts with sunlight; transforming the ventilated shell of the building in a precious and iridescent surface.
A new post by Joe Simpson, Diary of a Tile Addict, July 2017.