A bold new era of aesthetic possibilities with precast concrete begins today in North America.
AltusGroup, the partnership of precasters dedicated to innovation powered by collaboration, has become the exclusive U.S. and Canadian sourcepoint distributors of Graphic Concrete technology for imparting durable patterns and images onto precast surfaces such as facades, walls, spandrels and soundwalls.
Graphic Concrete is a patented technology that has been used extensively in projects across Europe, the Nordics and Australia. The technology transfers patterns — custom or stock — as a surface retarder via membrane placed at the bottom of the form. Concrete is cast atop the membrane. After the concrete is cured and extracted from the form, the retarder is washed away with a high-pressure washer, revealing an image that results from the contrast between the fair faced and the exposed aggregate surface. Selection of various aggregates and pigments can dramatically expand possibilities in the finished surface.
“Graphic Concrete offers architects the versatility to deliver distinctive, intriguing and iconic imagery to precast concrete surfaces,” says Kimmo Knaapila, CEO of Graphic Concrete Ltd. “Precast concrete has always been celebrated for its aesthetic versatility. Graphic Concrete allows architects to easily add a true sense of artistry and creativity to create surfaces that range from sublime to breathtaking. The Graphic Concrete membrane is environmentally friendly and the patterned concrete surface is very durable and virtually maintenance free.”
Driving precast innovation
The agreement with Graphic Concrete builds on the AltusGroup’s expanding portfolio of precast innovations. AltusGroup members will use the Graphic Concrete technology on CarbonCast Enclosure Systems, its mainstay precast concrete high performance sandwich walls and architectural insulated cladding products, as well as its new ARCIS Rainscreen technology in addition to other precast elements and precast products that can take advantage of the image technology.
“Our nimble and driven group of precasters continues to embrace novel and innovative technologies that improve the performance and aesthetic beauty of precast concrete to the benefit of the building team,” says John Carson, executive director of AltusGroup. “We expect a rapid adoption of the Graphic Concrete technology among our current members, which will expedite the availability of this proven surface treatment from Florida to British Columbia and everywhere in between as new precasters are expected to join the organization for the right to use Graphic Concrete as a network user member.”
“Our goal is to enable architects and designers to turn their visions into reality,” says Blair Davies, head of Graphic Concrete, North America. “Our products can be tailored and the outcome of each project is unique. We believe in building a better built environment through the use of Graphic Concrete.”
The first-ever national partnership of precast companies dedicated to “innovation powered by collaboration,” AltusGroup challenges the industry’s brightest minds to speed the development and perfection of precast technologies that improve the built environment. Products include the award-winning CarbonCast® line of products featuring C-GRID carbon fiber grid reinforcing and ARCIS ultra-thin precast panels for rainscreens and other applications. AltusGroup companies have an unparalleled network of manufacturing plants, technical staff and sales personnel to ensure architects, engineers and contractors get the help they need—and the quality and performance they expect. For more information, visit altusprecast.com or call 866-GO-ALTUS.
About Graphic Concrete
Graphic Concrete Ltd manufactures and sells Graphic Concrete, a patented innovative product that enables durable patterns and images to be produced on prefabricated concrete surfaces. The technology was invented by interior architect Samuli Naamanka in the late 1990s. Samuli’s inspiration was to create an industrial product for large-scale surfaces, a tool with which architects could be more visually creative. Graphic Concrete has since been working with a wide range of projects in 25 countires around the world, ranging from industrial buildings to fine art.
Michael Drabenstott for AltusGroup
Blair Davies for Graphic Concrete
John Carson, AltusGroup