Research applied to architecture, the cornerstone of the XII ASCER Ceramics Chair
The School of Architecture at UIC Barcelona organised the XII edition of the ASCER Ceramics Chair which included a visit to the workshop of the ceramist Toni Cumella and also the facilities of the Disser company, specialists in the study and execution of ventilated facades and pavements.
In this XII edition, the Ceramics Chair is aiming for a more professional approach in the area of research applied to architecture. Students will need to work based on lines of research that will have already been defined by the team of professors connected to the Chair, in order to end by projecting a piece that will resolve needs and/or provide new benefits to the architecture and construction sector.
Throughout the academic year students will be supported by an expert in patents and utility models, since the aim of the course is to manage to intellectually protect pieces that are of interest in terms of construction, architecture or commercial use. The idea behind this is for students to continue to work on those pieces as part of a real research project which will allow each of them to achieve greater development and even reach a point where they can manufacture and sell them.
The new course format as set out for this XII ASCER Ceramics Chair will allow students to form part of a team of inventors of a patent, to be the co-author of an article about their piece in a specialised journal or participate in a real research project with support from companies in the sector, amongst others.
Ensuring that there is a patent for the pieces developed during the XII ASCER Ceramics Chair is the result of a project undertaken during the 2014-2015 edition by a student called Andrea Massip. The project was called “HI”, it resolves various aspects of urban pavements and has already been patented. “HI” is currently under development in a research team that consists of a team of professors and the student herself.
About the ASCER Ceramics Chair
The ASCER (Spanish Association of Tile and Pavement Manufacturers) Ceramics Chair was founded in 2004 in the School of Architecture at UIC Barcelona with the aim of combining the creative and innovative abilities of future architects with the extraordinary aesthetic and functional possibilities of ceramics today.
Each academic year, the Barcelona Cermics Chair undertakes three types of activities in parallel which, with ceramics as the recurring theme, involve a reflection on the material and its applications in architectural projects. The main activities are related to each other, covering the theoretical, technical and practical aspects of ceramics: conferences with prestigious architects and in which a reflection is made on ceramics in relation to the main issues in architecture, talks by specialists and visits in which the material and its practical applications are looked at in greater depth. Finally there will also be a project competition in which students will develop a project involving a ceramics piece.
Since the Ceramics Chair in the School of Architecture at UIC Barcelona was set up in 2004 more than 200 students have been able to pass through its classrooms and obtain greater knowledge of the product as well as of the enormous opportunities which ceramic tiles can offer to the creative and conceptual work of these professionals. The ASCER Ceramics Chair is directed by Dr Vicenç Sarrablo, an architect and Director of the Technical Area in the School of Architecture at UIC Barcelona and also by two architects, Dr Jordi Roviras and Cristina García-Castelao.
Over the last decade there have been many proposals for the development of new applications for ceramics presented by students from an innovative perspective. All of these projects will be added to the report which is written up every year, entitled "Ceramic materials" and can be found on the Chairs Network website.