Smart-ologic Corian Living by Karim Rashid

April 26, 2010

During Milan Design Week 2010, the Corian design store featured the “Smart-ologic Corian Living” exhibition that was designed by Karim Rashid.

The exhibition featured soft organic shapes realised through a morphic material to create a sensual living environment, a space that echoes the digital techno-organic world we live in, evoking an alternative way of experiencing the home environment.


Photography by Leo Torri

Description of the Smart-ologic Corian Living project by Karim Rashid:

The “Smart-ologic Corian® Living” exhibition gave me the opportunity to develop a modular holistic house – a house that can be produced with minimal concave and convex panels and simple tooling. I have always been interested in this notion of a modular house, of efficient dwelling that can be erected simply and quickly, that can be inexpensive and democratic, and customizable with little cause and great effect. I always believed that architecture finally comes down to a system of components, but what we need are industrial elements that are more free form and flexible in their configuration as not to end up in the world of a grid.  My other concern was to create these panels with less waste and to have the waste reused.

I wanted create a really positive, interesting, and artistic space for living that echoes the digital technorganic world we live in. “Smart-ologic Corian® Living” also gave me a venue to design interior objects in DuPont™ Corian® advanced surface – using also the versions from the 2010 collections Eco-Concrete ed Eco-Terrazzo with recycled content – and other DuPont materials that could be mass produced in a similar biomorphic way. With these elements the spaces are fluid and human and can communicate an organic, soft, pleasurable domestic environment.

I believe that the design of “Smart-ologic Corian® Living” is a metaphor for how technology, housing, furnishing, and space can work together to evoke an increased sense of experience, affect our psyche and bring us a better living, and also enable us to reduce the environmental imprint of our daily decisions and actions.

Like many experiments of the mid-century the house uses a single repeated flat panel. I started with the desire to have a modular system of a single molded panel of DuPont™ Corian®. The panel in DuPont™ Corian® is double layered with a panel of DuPont™ Energain®, a new DuPont solution to enhance energy efficiency and comfort in homes. This system of panels could be reconfigured to different proportions and forms. This modularity was also amplified by the diversity of the color palette, by the multitude of colours of DuPont™ Corian®.

I have also been given the possibility, first in the world, to create a design using an experimental version of DuPont™ Corian® with bio-based ingredients and recycled content and I conceived the Eko Bench, a unique outdoor seating solution integrating a green mantle of grass planted into one of its undulating curves. I also liked to play with the strong materiality of DuPont™ Zodiaq® quartz surface, which was also developed in a version with bio-based ingredients, creating a large and colourful seating area around a column, inspired by the mixing of organic elements with organic form.

The soft organic shape produced for this evocative home concept creates a womb-like structure that is conducive to energy efficacy through the sculptured form, no corners trap hot or cold air. The house relies on sustainable and smart infrastructure for energy consumption and production with water reuse and low impact construction.

With its capability to protect the envelope while letting it “breathe”, DuPont™ Tyvek® building membrane contributes to the comfort of interior environments. The photovoltaic modules of DuPont, integrated into the roof, create environmentally-sustainable energy. All the lighting is LED for efficiency and low energy consumption and the radiant floors are powered by solar generated energy.

This concept of techno-organic house is the starting point for shaping a smart domestic environment, based on the performance of a variety of different materials and technologies. Enjoy.

Visit the DuPont Corian website – here.