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Azure's July/August 2019 Issue cover
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July/August 2019

#273
July/August 2019

From a groundbreaking seaside museum in China to an elegant new sofa by Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, Azure’s July/August issue unveils the 20 winners of the ninth annual AZ Awards!

Matteo Brioni amps up his latest line of all-natural interior finishes with the TerraFrame collection, a surfacing created with dual-toned and -textured materials.

You could call Matteo Brioni’s latest flooring surface half-baked and he likely wouldn’t mind a bit. Through the Lombardy studio he founded eight years ago, Brioni has been offering architects and designers an alternative to conventional tiling with his custom “raw earth” surfaces. His latest collection, TerraFrame, augments his usual soil bases with baked decorative elements to create a uniquely dual-toned and -textured material.

The theme is “dichotomy,” says Brioni, whose inspiration was opus signinum flooring, made in ancient Rome by mixing small tile fragments with mortar. Born into a family that has owned a brick maker’s furnace in Gonzaga, about 140 kilometres southeast of Milan, for four generations, he came by his influences naturally.

Marialaura Rossiello Irvine of Studio Irvine, a design firm in Milan, is Brioni’s art director. Together, they select clays and natural aggregates from various regions, then blend them to achieve the chromatic and functional specifications best suited to each project. When the desired form and colour are achieved, the raw earth blend is air-dried, not fired. The resulting material emits no toxic fumes, absorbs sound and helps to regulate room temperatures.

Since 2010, the studio’s surfaces have appeared in a wide range of projects, including retail stores in Rome and Amsterdam, a restaurant in Venice and the Dada showroom in Milan. In 2014, Brioni’s take on an adobe brick wall, developed for Kéré Architecture, was featured at the Venice Biennale.

For the TerraFrame line, distinguished by its contrasting elements, Brioni has chosen to go more graphic than rough-hewn. In this case, the terracotta is glued to the clay and air-dried; the entire surface is then sanded and treated with linseed oil and natural wax. The dichotomous result blends the traditional with the modern, the raw with the cooked. It’s a unique line from a studio already known for its uniqueness.

This story was taken from the March/April 2018 issue of Azure. Buy a copy of the issue here, or subscribe here.

AZURE is an independent magazine working to bring you the best in design, architecture and interiors. We rely on advertising revenue to support the creative content on our site. Please consider whitelisting our site in your settings, or pausing your adblocker while stopping by.