Growing up in the Midwest in a town filled with modern architecture it was rare that a building did not make use of brick. From the churches by Eero and Eliel Sarrinen, the Robert Venturi fire station, I.M.Pei Library and our City Hall — brick was applied. No matter the building form, brick seemed to symbolize the solidity of earth, the steadiness of tradition and a quiet resilience over the effects of time. For me it is the “Steady Eddy” of architectural material and one that is often overlooked today. We accept it as a traditional material, but do we really understand its value? To dig deeper visit this page from the Brick Industry or watch this brief video.In contemporary Asheville we do have a few examples here on some of our latest hotels to blend contextually with some of our older buildings. Architect Larry Traber made use of it on his own home he built in 1965 on Horizon Hill.
As real estate agents who specialize in ranch homes to remodel our clients always appreciate the constructions wrapped entirely in brick over the ones where the material was only applied to the front architectural facade. The warmth, the texture and low maintenance aspect is appealing. Though they require some extra effort to adapt in terms of punching in openings to let in more light, the long-term benefits out weigh the cost in labor. Think about it — how often do you have to repaint brick, replace dry rot or pest damage? Compare the insulating value of clay to wood. For us it is the king of sustainability and ambassador of comfort. For inspirational examples of brick used in modern design visit our pinterest page here. And for those of you who say, “Brick is boring”, I hope you’ll look at it just a bit differently from now on and consider it for your next project. I know I will. Cheers!