designed by london-based shiro studio for italian brand metalco, the ‘uluru’ collection has been conceived as a modular and sculptural family of seating elements made of UHPC—ultra-high-performance concrete. the set has been conceived to offer a playful experience in public spaces. when describing the pieces, andrea morgante of shiro studio comments, ‘I was interested in generating a serene form that could gently relate to the human body whilst seating in different postures and positions. public benches have somehow the noble responsibility to connect people to the surrounding environment and at the same time, to offer a comfortable rest.’

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
view of the single module
all images © shiro studio 

 

 

 

shiro studio gave ‘urulus’ a sculptural identity that begins from a plain surface that is gently pulled vertically to create a comfortable backrest support. each component is modular so when connected to each other they form a continuous, sculptural micro-landscape that can vary in size and configuration. playfulness is also very important; in public spaces the benches can become an improvised playground, allowing children to explore the different seating postures while engaging with their innate spatial curiosity.

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
the nearly non-porous surface makes ‘urulus’s’ closer to polished granite than to normal cast concrete

 

 

 

‘the availability of UHPC was also a crucial factor during the design development of the ‘uluru’ collection,’ morgante explains. ‘we wanted to fully explore and challenge the vast potential of this innovative and versatile material through a form that could emphatically communicate lightness, strength, and fluidity. UHPC ductal allowed us to create an incredibly light yet rigid concrete structure, just 20 millimeters thick.’

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
the collection has a sculptural identity that begins from a plain surface that is gently pulled vertically

 

 

 

the nearly non-porous surface allows ‘urulus’s’ final finish to be closer to polished granite than to normal cast concrete. compression strength, abrasion and thermal show resistance and UV stability are among few of the qualities that are closely associated with UHPC.

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
view of the single module

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
two modules configuration

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
top view of the eight module configuration 

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
detail of the three module configuration

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
detail of the concrete surface

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
detail of the sculptural backrest supports

shiro studio uluru concrete modular benches designboom
detail of the continuous smooth concrete surface

 

 

designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

 

edited by: juliana neira | designboom

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