Cork

What else can we do with cork?

After opening a bottle of wine, there were several times that I asked to myself: what can I do with this cork? On the last November 11th, I went to the opening of the Taipei Design Materials Center, and one of the materials that caught my attention, indeed was the cork.

 

Half of the world's cork is produced in Portugal.Commonly, cork is used in products such as wine bottle stoppers or in bulletin boards. However, his history in architecture and interior design until a few years ago was quite limited mainly to sub-flooring and insulation. On the other hand, given the actual environmental circumstances some architects are looking for  environmentally friendly building alternatives, and here is where the cork is beginning to become an innovative ally.

 

First of all, we need to understand the process of making cork; typically the trees are cut down and milled in order to produce construction materials such as plywood and lumber. However, the cork oak tree is different; the bark, which grows back, is harvested instead stead of the trunk. Once the outer layer of the tree is stripped, it is taken to a processing plant where the bark is chopped into pieces depending on the size of its usage. After the granules are heated and compressed into panels or blocks, it is very interesting that for this process no industrial adhesives or glues are used, therefore, reducing the ecological impact. The chemical makeup used in the cork oak bark is remarkably stable, as well it does not biodegrade easily, which allows a reprocessing of wasted or old pieces. Moreover, it is naturally water-resistant and insulating. insulating.  

 

- By Nelly Daniela Ortiz Canales

 

Cork House

Cork House

Photo by Real Cork Floors on Flickr

A scarpaesque design by Mario Botta in the Castelvecchio Museum

Cork Fabric

Cork Fabric

Cork Fabric

Cork Fabric

Cork House

Cork House

Normally, cork is used in interior applications. However, the natural fire- and water-resistance of the material led the architects of this project to use it as cladding. (Photo by Real Cork Floors on Flickr)

Cork Bathroom

Cork Bathroom

Photo by Real Cork Floors on Flickr

Cork wall and ceiling tiles compliment your imaginative, decorative and functional ideas. A unique alternative to traditional wall coverings, these eco-friendly cork tiles add character and warmth to your walls. As you can see in the above image, the cork has several uses, including acoustical properties, the thickness can vary from 3mm-13mm.

Cork Fabric

Cork Fabric