The eighteenth Barcelona Ceramics Chair explores the versatility of ceramic designs in architecture

Seventeen fourth-year Architecture students presented their projects before a jury of renowned industrial architects from the ceramics sector

On 19 November, the UIC Barcelona Aula Jardí room hosted the final adjudication of the eighteenth UIC Barcelona School of Architecture’s Barcelona Ceramics Chair, which this year was held on the theme “Cerámica versátil” (Versatile ceramics). Over the course of just over a month, a total of seventeen students from the Chair worked on proposals to investigate new uses for ceramic pieces already on the market, or to design new products by investigating their versatility and applicability in the field of architecture.

The jury for this event featured architects Toni Gironès and Benjamin Iborra (Mesura), and David Bueno, director of Innovation and Transformation at Neolith / The Size.

Prior to the start of the adjudication, the rector of UIC Barcelona, Alfonso Méndiz, viewed the students’ proposals accompanied by the director of UIC Barcelona School of Architecture, Josep Lluis i Ginovart, the director of the Chair, Vicenç Sarrablo, and lecturers Jordi Roviras and Cristina Garcia Castelao. The rector congratulated the students and praised the Ceramics Chair for being a leader in “knowledge transfer, innovation and sustainability”.

The winning projects
The winning projects were announced in the afternoon. For the first time in the history of the UIC Barcelona School of Architecture Ceramic Chair, the jury decided to award four equal awards.

Student Valentina Marín was one of the winners with her proposal “Suidou”, which, according to the judges, “is based on a solid idea with a very focused and technical materialisation”. Student Zuha Bari was another winner with her project “Bloque Galce”, a piece that “alludes to the essence of clay and ceramics and addresses both structure and technique”. Ana Tchumburidze went home with another of the awards for her proposal “Dentro”, which, according to the jury, “successfully responds to many architectural parameters, such as structure, formwork and installations”. Finally, student Sofia Argelich was also named winner with her proposal titled “Core Lam”, “a proposal using large-format ceramic laminates that opens up a wide range of possibilities for their application in architectural shade structures”.

At the close of the event, Vicenç Sarrablo thanked all the students for their hard work and highlighted the quality of every single proposal. “The level this year has been outstanding and the judges have found choosing the winners very difficult”, he said.

The Ceramics Chair has been running for eighteen consecutive years thanks to sponsorship by the Spanish Association of Ceramic Tile and Paving Manufacturers (ASCER). The aim of the Chair is to promote networking between Architecture students and the industry so that future architects can focus their proposals on ceramics, innovate in new formats or develop new applications and features for existing formats.

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