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Cladding is the real talking point at Clerkenwell Design Week

by Jennie Ward

The event highlighted the true potential and versatility of rainscreen cladding on its Talk Space conference structure, which was fabricated by Vivalda using a mix of [natura], [linea] and [lunara], the newest fibre cement façade product from Equitone.

The latest trends in facades and fixings were on show at this year’s Clerkenwell Design Week, London, in May 2022. A highpoint in any discerning designer’s, architect’s or developer’s calendar, the UK’s leading independent design festival showcased state of the art cladding on its Talk Space conference structure, which was created using a mix of [natura], [linea] and [lunara], the newest fibre cement façade product from Equitone. 

Looking at the enclosure of the conference platform, this utilises A-rated [natura] panels in N164 Quartz White, which were fabricated by Vivalda, the UK’s largest independent distributor of non-flammable cladding products. This sophisticated, smooth surfaced white façade was held in place using a secret fix solution, TUF-S fixings and Nvelope NV3 rails and hangers – all supplied by SFS. This too was assembled off-site by Vivalda. 

Vivalda has the capability to include engravings on façade boards such as Equitone’s.

All of the etchings on these facade panels were created by Vivalda using its in-house CNC technology. Andy Thomas, Regional Director at Vivalda, said: “This was a fantastic project to be involved in, as it allowed us to really push the envelope and show what can be achieved when architect, product manufacturer and fabricator work together. To create this total structure, including the walls and central canopy section, we undertook over 200 individual CNC cuts in all. 

“We also suggested incorporating engraving within the design, to inform visitors about each Equitone product and how it was fabricated. The use of etchings or engravings on cladding is becoming much more popular as designers discover the creative possibilities of this process. Be it words, inspiring quotations or distinctive patterns and motifs, this option within the fabrication supply chain is only just beginning to be appreciated by many architects and developers,” he said.

Above the enclosure of Talk Space, Vivalda created the canopy, which was made from Equitone [linea] TE90 Chalk and [linea] TE85 Graphite. All of the triangular panels were precision-cut by Vivalda using CNC cutting equipment and optimisation software to minimise waste. At the very top of the Talk Space, the central cone was made from Equitone’s newest fibre cement product, [lunara] in LA60 Hessian. All of these panels were cut to size and prepared off-site for rapid installation.

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