Terazzo Makes a Comeback
UK, Products –
Furniture and Industrial Designer ROBIN GRASBY re-invents this ancient surface material by using recycled materials in a highly graphic way
NOT LONG AGO, terazzo was seen as old-fashioned and something grandma would use for her kitchen floor. But the surface material has made an astonishng comeback, appearing in sophisticated restaurants, resorts and apartments as designers and architects fall in love again with the endless colour combinations and versatility of the centuries-old material evolved from the Romans.
Chunks of marble or stone decoratively set in concrete, terazzo is a hard-wearing, cost-effective, aesthetically uncompromised and sustainable alternative to solid stone. And thanks to London-based furniture and industrial designer Robin Grasby, terazzo production has become sustainable and eco-friendly with his invention of Altrock.
Altrock is a surface material handmade from discarded cast-offs such as marble flour, marble chips, chunks of offcuts and broken slabs and binding them with resin to create a hardwearing, low-maintenance and highly graphic surface that emphasises the raw materiality of the stone.
Durable, waterproof and stain-resistant thanks to being sealed with wax oil, Altrock can be used to make furniture, worktops, wall coverings, bathroom surfaces and more. Casting by hand enables slabs to be produced in diverse shapes and sizes, and it can be pigmented in an endless variety of custom colours – allowing Altrock to be crafted bespoke to complement any contemporary interior.
Robin Grasby, creator of Altrock:
I wanted to develop an application for marble that can showcase the beauty of the material and utilise its properties as a hardwearing surface, but in a unique and contemporary way. I’ve always had a thing for natural stone. Materials used in their rawest forms always appeal to me; they have an honesty and simplicity that is reflected in my entire approach to design.
Story by Carol Kraal. Photographs courtesy of Altrock with Robin Grasby portrait by Maxwell Anderson