Concrete Cat, a “Canadian atelier established in 2007”, and based in Edmonton, Alberta, has revolutionized the use of concrete in interior and product design. Their exclusive and hand-applied “Oracle” method of mixing additives into poured concrete creates kaleidoscopic patterns and vibrant colours, stretching the boundaries of this common building material.
Concrete Cat fills a void in the creative use of concrete both for architectural surfaces – like their impressive display of fireplaces, reception desks, feature walls, and countertops, and also in smaller, molded objet d’arts that can fill our homes with unexpected colour and delight.
The “Vesta” (pictured below) is a simple sculptural piece that has a variety of functions. I think that it would make a lovely vase for fresh flowers, or a sturdy pencil holder for my desk!
Molded from an ashtray originally aboard a German ocean liner, and named for the ship, the “Europa” is a classy and colourful vessel for your tabletop. Though the original purpose was to hold ash, I think it would work equally well as a place to stash jewelery, keys, or change. This product comes both in marbled “Oracle” and solid colours. Some of my favourite hues are shown in the photo below!
“Amalgam” looks like a pile of happy-faced, book-supporting minions. In this piece, Concrete Cat has imbibed simple bookends with so much character and emotion that you will be sure to smile every time that you reach for a novel, or your favourite design magazine.
A second set of sculpted bookends, named “Atlas” (below), may have a simpler and more traditional shape than “Amalgam”, but with a wild “Oracle” pattern that makes up for it in spades.
Once your bookshelf and desk have been decorated with Concrete Cat’s products, your walls may start to look a little bare! The “Saturnus Disk” is just the thing to enliven a plain vertical surface, with its mesmerizing circular shape and handcrafted marbled appearance.
Concrete Cat has shown that it is possible to imbibe grey concrete with a range of unmuddied and bold colours - a surprising and delightful achievement. Their innovative “Oracle” method can mimic the effect of a sunset, a Jackson Polluck painting, or a soft watercolour, proving concrete’s worth as an artistic tool and not solely an industrial material.
Check out Concrete Cat’s website to see all of their designs!
All images courtesy of Concrete Cat.
Researched and Written by Leah Komishon, Faculty of Architecture, Environmental Design, University of Manitoba