Artedomus is renowned in the design world for curating architectural solutions that are unique, timeless and durable. In the latest additions to the ongoing Expert Series, Artedomus touches on the key motivations for its product selections and processes and looks into some new technologies, as well as delving into the history of some of its tried-and-true suppliers.
Artedomus began 30 years ago as an architectural finishes business and now has showrooms Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, and Perth. The company seeks to put aside trends by reimagining classics and retaining the concept of timelessness through exceptional design, with a range of products, finishes and fittings curated to inspire designers and architects to do the same.
Episode 1 – Active 2.0
Developed by GranitiFiandre, Active 2.0 is an innovative photocatalytic application that uses a combination of titanium dioxide and silver. When fused to porcelain panels and tiles, Active 2.0 has anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-odour and self-cleaning properties. The microlayer has no effect on the aesthetic of the tile, yet its powerful properties functionally transform the material it is applied to, making the resulting porcelain tiles and panels suitable for both interiors and exterior façades.
As Active 2.0 can be applied to any product in the Fiandre range it is highly versatile, and Artedomus predicts it will become a staple of Fiandre’s range in the future. As the Australian market becomes more health conscious, the anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties will be more relevant than ever.
Episode 2 – The External Environment
Architectural ceramics, encompassing porcelain panels and stone have a far greater capacity to withstand the harsh Australian environment. Compared with materials that are widely used for exteriors such as cement render and aluminium cladding, architectural ceramics are weather-resistant, UV-stable and non-flammable, delivering a stronger, safer barrier.
Artedomus offers a variety of products to suit applications from large commercial buildings to residential projects. Large-format porcelain panels provide a monolithic effect, while textured and three-dimensional qualities offered by the INAX range make them a compelling alternative to brick.
Episode 3 – Natural Stone Care
Like all surfaces, natural stone requires care over time. With the right care, natural stone can maintain a consistent aesthetic over time, looking little different over the years, or can be allowed to naturally patina.
Sealing is an important part of looking after natural stone, making it easier to maintain and reducing acid etching and oil marking. Different types of sealers require different levels of application and should be used appropriately. A penetrating sealer does not change the overall aesthetic of the stone, while a surface sealer is akin to a lacquer, seen on slate or other dense stones. A topical sealer is typically used commercially and is a sealer that is specific to the area it is applied.
It is important that spills are cleaned up as quickly as possible. Typical cleaning products can deplete the sealer, meaning water and a microfiber cloth are the best way to clean natural stone, or a pH-neutral cleaner can be used. If marks do occur, there are means of repairing them, such as extraction of oil stains or re-honing stone to remove stubborn stains like acid marks.
Episode 4 – Types of Stone
As stone is formed through natural processes, different types of stone offer markedly different qualities. Sedimentary stone forms from sedimentary particles that travel through a body of water and become compacted over time through the pressure of the water. Commonly used for floors, walls and cladding, sedimentary stone often shows signs of its origins, such as traces of shells or colour variations. Metamorphic stone is a stone that has undergone a transformation – quartzite is a metamorphic stone that is one of the hardest, most durable stones available. Igneous stone originates deep in the earth’s crust, or from magma or lava, and typically offers larger ‘grains’ and fewer signs of life than sedimentary stone. Travertine is a limestone-like product that is technically defined as a coral. Holes naturally occur in travertine, which can be filled or left unfilled in its natural state and Artedomus sources some of the most durable travertines available.
Episode 5 – Terracotta
Terracotta is a key material in Artedomus’ range. Particularly relevant to Australian designers due to its raw, natural finish and sustainable production line, Artedomus is continually searching for new ways for this traditional and hardy material to be used. Cotto Manetti comes from Tuscany, where the company creates true terracotta products in the traditional way. Aside from the pots and urns it has been creating for over 200 years, CottoManetti can also create custom pieces from terracotta, such as the range of outdoor furniture it produced with InternoItaliano.
Episode 6 – Customisation
Customisation is key to architectural design. Artedomus seeks to find suppliers that can add the ‘fingerprint’ of the architect or designer to their projects. The New Volumes range made using Elba displays this dedication to originality. Created by all Australian designers, the pieces are formed in a variety of 3D shapes using this hardy, denseyet soft-looking material. Similarly, Artesserae mosaics and INAX tiles can be made to order in customised shapes, colours and finishes. Agape also has a range of finishes for its bathtub exteriors, providing a level of customisation that allows for different interior aesthetics and styles.
Episode 7 – Sustainability
Artedomus has recently undertaken to create a detailed document around sustainability in all areas of its production line and processes. It has moved all of its offices and warehouses to green energy and implemented extensive recycling throughout, which includes recycling off-cuts and timber packaging in the warehouses.
Artedomus holds supplier INAX in high regard for its sustainable production methods. The Japanese company has been creating tiles using environmentally friendly processes for over 100 years and carefully reuses off-cuts and breakages.
Another sustainable product that actually helps the environment is Active 2.0, a revolutionary photocatalytic surface that reduces nitrogen in the air and is anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-odour. This surface can be fused to a number of different panels and tiles supplied by Artedomus to create an invisible and permanent protective layer.
Episode 8 – Agape
Artedomus is the exclusive supplier for Agape’s Memory series. Agape is well known for creating pieces that will not date in years to come, such as the iconic Spoon bath. The Memory range takes a contemporary look at traditional products, such as the Ottocento, which is a modern take on the classic clawfoot tub. It also includes a series of traditionally-styled metal tapware and fittings that would be at home in new, high-end residential projects and in villa and bungalow restorations.
Using Cristalplant, a sustainable, bio-based material, Agape is able to create tubs and vanities with shapes that echo those seen in nature. The matte finish makes these products very practical as they will not showup every splash and splatter in the bathroom.
Created by French designer Nicholas Gwenael for Agape, Sen is another series of products available through Artedomus. Sen taps and accessories uses anodised aluminium to create clean, architectural lines –a very durable and contemporary fitting that complements high-end home designs.