MG Graphic Concrete / Svensk sammanfattning Grafisk betong Wikipedia



During the last ten years I have been exploring new artistic methods for transference of two dimensional pictures to concrete surfaces. In year 2000 I got the possibility of competing for the execution of the artistic design of Stadshagen Subway station in Stockholm, my idea was to transfer photographic motives of nature from my home district to the ticket halls on the scale of 11 in one of these techniques. As I had earlier laborated on my own with the transference of pictures on concrete by the means of screen prints at the Academy of Art in 1996-97, I assumed that this technique was also available within the concrete industry.

Unfortunately there did not seem to be any experience of this field of application in Sweden, so after searching for some time I got the opportunity of visiting a company in France who had elaborated a similar variety. Useful tips was shared, some casting tests was made and I could go on continuing my laborations at home.

However, at that time no precast industry dared to take part in this project so the production was made with the help of hired artisans in a simple but functional workshop in Stockholm. This technique is basically a graphic method. The pictures are either digitally printed or produced from screen prints and can be made in editions like other graphic matter. There are no colour pigments that get pale or disappear, only the contrast between the cement ooze surface and the uncovered aggregate of the plate. Theoretically this is very simple to perform, but in practice it is a delicate process as the esthetic qualities of the concrete surface are decided by factors like temperature, the amount of water, aggregate type, size and form, added ingredients and of course the methods of work. The techniques has gradually been modified and new methods have been invented along the way, one of these is entirely my own, it´s called Concrete Intarsia for which I have applicated a patent.

At this moment I have made several cooperations with the pre-cast Industry in architectural projects involving my own artworks and we are also involved in several different types of artistic applications of the techiques cooperating with other artists and designers.

/ Mikael Göransson

Concrete is ballast with cement but also volume and surface

A cast surface can be totally smooth or have structure and a pattern owing to the mould. The grey tone of the surface is partly decided by the form material, but both grey tone and colour are affected by the cement, original or with pigment.The ballast material is exposed by pressing in behind this thin surface layer. Its colour stands out contrastingly against the colour of the cement surface. This uncovering of the underlying ballast so that it is partly visible, can be made by a chemical or mecanical working of the hardening surface , e.g. active uncovering, or by covering the mould with retarder that delays the hardening of the concrete surface to a certain depth, e.g. passive uncovering. If the mould is covered with retarder only point by point, only these points of the inside of the concrete get uncovered.

The “starting” material for a partial uncovering can as in the example presented here be black-and-white photos which are screened and transferred to the surface via transparent film and silk-screen cloth as a retarder covering built up point by point.

After casting and rinsing the picture comes out through the contrast between the uncovered grains of sand and the unaffected cement surface. The method points forward to the possibility of making concrete surfaces with general patterns for facade surfaces where unaffected form cast surface is contrasted to ballast material where both form and structure may be varied. Such interesting and vivid surfaces could be made for taking a close look at or for being regarded from a distance.

/ Tage Hertzell Arkitekt SAR 2003