Foster + Partners has created an exclusive range of stone for Italian supplier, Luce di Carrara, which will be officially launched at the Cersaie exhibition in Bologna in September. The range represents the first time the practice has collaborated with a supplier to produce a collection and will set a new benchmarking system to addresses the sustainability of stone's processing and transportation.
Each of the "Foster Kits" containing samples of stone, along with suggestions for accompanying materials, will be available in four different colour combinations: sand, grey, red and black and white. The selections are based on the practice's experience using the material to create light-filled, high quality buildings and interiors around the world. Stone has been prevalent in some of Foster + Partners' most notable projects, including the transformation of Trafalgar Square and the Sackler Galleries in London, the Joslyn Art Museum in the USA, the Musee de Prehistoire des Gorges du Verdon in France and, more recently, the spa of the Dolder Grand Hotel in Zurich.
Despite stone's natural longevity as a material, its extraction is known to be harmful to the environment. The collection therefore seeks to mitigate these effects with the creation of a unique benchmarking system. Examining its lifecycle from extraction to construction, the new range addresses the energy consumed by transportation, processing, packaging, installation, waste recovery and repairs.
"The development of this collection marks an exciting new venture for Foster + Partners and will allow customers to benefit from our experience using stone in a variety of contexts with their own projects," said John Small, head of product design at Foster + Partners. "As well as setting new standards in quality, the range addresses the impact of stone on the environment, exploring how stone's longevity can be optimised and the energy demands of its processing mitigated."