CAST MASONRY 31/01/08
Sir Richard MacCormac has mastered the art of using high quality concrete finishes in many of his buildings. Whether as load-bearing structural frames, deployed in his Crown Place building in Hackney; or as structural vaulting used in his St John's College student housing in Oxford; or as cladding, as used for the Ruskin Museum at Lancaster University. In each case the finishes are as good as hewn stone and the weather detailing impeccable.
It is astonishing that this durable and environmentally friendly material is still described by some as Recontructed Stone. This classes it a second rate material, an apology for not using real stone. It is of course a high quality Pre Cast Concrete but of course, that description has overtones of crude 'concrete jungle,' greyness and unfortunate weather staining.
Richard Coleman first proposed the phrase Cast Masonry to distinguish a qualitative product from a base material, ten years ago during his time at the Royal Fine Art Commission.