Made in EARTH

ಮೇಡ್ ಇನ್ ಅರ್ಥ್ | sustainable architecture & building practices

2. TECHNIQUES - Tadelakt -

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We are happy to announce a collaboration with Clay Station, Bangalore for the Creative Plasters Workshop. Clay Station is a space for the experienced, aspiring and recreational potter. We love earth, and so do they. Together we bring a workshop to explore with you, what we are most passionate about.


 

A plaster that breathes; that regulates temperature and humidity inside a building; that absorbs both noise and odors; that ages beautifully with time. Add to that the infinite possibilities in aesthetics; pigmented or plain, smooth or grainy, regular or patterned, contemporary or rustic; natural plaster is irresistible!

Earth is the most widely available natural building material. It uses little or no energy in processing. It’s incredible plasticity, ecological and aesthetic qualities have enabled our ancestors to use it in abundance to build their homes, and in perfect harmony with their environment. Earth plaster, unlike paints and chemical coatings, do not emit any volatile components which could be harmful to our health. Being locally sourced, earth plasters reduce the environmental impact of our construction.

All over the world, there exists an incredible diversity of traditional recipes of natural plaster. It is this diversity of ingredients married with the many possibilities of textures and colors offered by the land, that is at the origin of this workshop.

Anybody can create natural plasters, together with the soil of their place, a dose of creativity, a trowel of motivation and a bit of experience! A place for experimentation, exhibition and knowledge sharing, the Creative Plasters workshop invites you to Clay Station for a one day hands-on session on the 19th or 20th of December 2015

Come and learn with us!

What will you learn?

Prepare, test and apply earth plasters (raw and stabilised) | Wall preparation | Base plaster | Finishing plaster | Decoration, plaster carving, embossing, use of color oxides and pigments | Discover and try the traditional Moroccan Tadelakt technique, a fine richly coloured water-proof plaster.

Prerequisites

Earth construction is for all! No requisite except the motivation to learn and the desire to play with the material.

The Program

One day workshop on the 19th or 20th of December 2015
from 9:00 am to 06:00 pm, lunch included.

The venue

The workshop will take place in the production facility of “Clay Station”

Clay station production unit,
L75, 15th cross, near Indian Bank
HSR layout, Bangalore 56 0102

Google map : https://goo.gl/maps/rL9up9jvxtB2
GPS coordinates : 12.914055, 77.630304
Equipment and material
Dress to get dirty! Bring a round smooth stone for the Tadelakt technique

Registration and fees

Maximum 20 participants on a first come first served basis
Fees : 2000 Rs  (1200 Rs for students, please send a scan of your student ID card, to : madeinearthindia@gmail.com )

ONLINE REGISTRATION FORM  : http://tinyurl.com/151219-PlasterWorkshop
Registration closes on the 14th of December.

Contact

madeinearthindia [at] gmail.com
+91 888 413 58 26 (jeremie)

Organisers

Clay Station www.claystation.in

Clay_Station_logo
Made In Earth Collective www.madeinearth.in

MIE logo-full

 

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There is a certain magic in working with natural materials, there is life in using earth and lime. There is a large palette to play with, but it was not until I learnt about Tadelakt, the Moroccan marvel technique, did I discover the pure class of craftsmanship in earth.

There were almost twenty of us, trying out this magical technique, on small earth block samples; Unsure of what it is going to feel like, how it is going to turn out, and what kind of commitment it requires. We had prepared our based plaster with lime and pigment on an adobe block, asked to choose a stone and begin!

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Dating thousands of years, Tadelakt is a magical water resistant chemistry of lime & vegetable oil resulting in a glimmering monolithic plaster that twinkles in the light as it seamlessly extends across surfaces of our structures, showcasing its extreme craftsmanship. A living surface that’s as hard as stone and as soft as leather, as breathing and waterproof as our skin; has its origins in the ancient city of Marrakech in Morocco.

16-ii 07-20 06-bbbTadelakt  is a particularly high lime-to- aggregate ratio which is applied in multiple thin coats to a substrate, such as an earthen wall surface, polished and then caressed with smooth stones. Finally. it is rubbed down with organic soap, with patience and a lot of love to make the surface seamless.

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It took time, a lot of time, for the surface to evolve, and to obtain the finish for this technique is all about the time spent making it.

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Tadelakt did surprise us. It demanded much more respect, and turned out much more elegant than what we expected. Now I know how and why this moroccan masterpiece had the ability to withstand the sands of time. Being water proof and customisable in different coloured finishes, having the ability to follow all forms of building; still holding the ability to breathe, with a property to gain beauty and strength over time, there is definitely magic here. It takes time to create timeless masterpieces; and if we have enough, Tadelakt surfaces are carefully sculpted artwork with a soul.

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By Santosh PrabhuTadelakt Workshop Participant & Intern at Made In Earth

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“For us, it goes in circles, move and continue, and move and continue
and keep moving.”– This brief from the team at Kashi Education Society came a long way in shaping our design process.
We imagine children running, walking along walls, a casual finger trailing a texture or a motif along a wall, stopping to peep through a little window unto the green fields, escaping into a class and resurfacing somewhere else, oblivious to the building around them.

Benaras 01c

Benaras 01d

Benaras 01e

Benaras 04a

Benaras 04b

Benaras 04c

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2015 Cute and Care2

Suma and Shuba are two sisters from Bangalore with secret alter egos. They are setting up an organic farm near the small village of Seegehalli, in the outer reaches of the city. The quaint farm is a 400 m long strip of land jeweled with a row of coconut trees on either side. They dream of eventually retiring here to a quieter and more natural lifestyle. We have started to visualize the basic requirement for life on the farm. Nicknamed ‘Cute’ and ‘Care’ by our interns, the two cottages would be the first step in realising Suma and Shubha’s dream. The ‘Cute’ cottage is to accommodate the two on their weekend visits and enable them to spend more time on the farm, while the ‘Care’ cottage is to house a small family who would be present to take care of the farm at all times. It seems to us that this is the perfect place for a small adobe home, as we have wonderful soil as well as a local skill set to produce Adobes. Follow this thread to see how these designs evolve as we walk Suma and Shubha, gradually towards their dream.

2015 Cute and Care

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Hungry morning.
Cooking was yet to happen.
Ingredients were ready.
Were just waiting for all the cooks to arrive.

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It was a hungry morning.
And it was no regular food fest; for one cook to cook for all.
It was something more special;
more unique and intimate, where everyone cooks;

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Here we were all cooks;
trying to get the ingredients right,
for one perfect food for everyone;
with little secret spice, for individual’s taste.

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Everyone gathered at the kitchen.
The kitchen smelt different,
The smell made us more hungry; Hungry to cook
For it was no regular kitchen.

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We had two master-chefs; And one master-ingredient;
We were all new to cooking; to this type of cooking;
Major ingredient was so much familiar;
Easy to play with; Easy to cook;

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To get it ready, it needed crushing;
And careful watering, And then mixing,
It must feel good in your fingers
For people to appreciate what we cook;

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We made a plan; We categorised the ingredients;
For making it easier to experiment;
To Aggregate, Binders, Mass,
Organic reinforcement and added flavours;

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We needed two dishes, to fulfil our hunger;
One main course and one dessert;
we called it base and finishing,
For it was no regular kitchen;

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We made a strategy; to get the recipe right;
we drew a grid, kept master-ingredient consistent;
Sprinkled aggregate towards the right;
Added binder down the grid.

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We made experiments; we made recipes;
Added colours and natural flavours
For this food was no regular food;
Like no other food, this food can breath.

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The food can’t crack, nor can it break,
nor can it chip off, and has load to take;
We tested its strength, hanging a bottle or two
For it was no regular food.

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We made the mix, we got the food
for each one, their own recipe;
We cared its cracks and loved it a lot,
For it was a food for hunger and not to eat;

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It was no regular kitchen,
And we called it the Earth kitchen;
It was no regular food,
We call it Natural plaster;

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by Santosh Prabhu,
Team Made In Earth
From a series of workshops on natural plaster held at Bangalore in July 2015

 

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A plaster that breathes, regulates temperature and humidity inside the building, absorbs both noise and odors and that ages beautifully with time. Add to that the infinite possibilities in aesthetics; Coloured or Natural, smooth or grainy, regular or patterned, contemporary or rustic; earth plaster is irresistible!

Additionally, unlike paints and other chemical coatings they do not emit any volatile components which could be harmful to our health and being locally available, they reduce the environmental impact of your construction.

Anybody can create and apply its own natural plaster with the soil of its place, a dose of creativity, a trowel of motivation and a bit of experience!
Come and learn with us!

The venue | The workshop will take place at the construction site of a contemporary earth house, designed by Ar. Varun Thautam in north Bangalore. An opportunity for you to discover other earth construction techniques such as Adobes, and vault masonry with the free spanning technique.
Site No.23, Green Garden
Chokkanahalli, Yelahanka Hobli
Bangalore North Taluk
GPS coordinates : 13.08672 , 77.62425

Equipment | Be ready to get dirty! Carry a good hat and drinking water

Registration and fees | 600 Rs including lunch and tea, Registration before  thursday 3rd of July.
>> Access the online registration form

Contact | madeinearthindia@gmail.com , +91 888 413 58 26 (jeremie)

Organisers | Varun Thautam www.varunthautam.com & Made In Earth Collective www.madeinearth.in

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Most people often remember earth as a crude material; it’s plain looks that are so contrasting from the aesthetics of finished industrial products. But the irony is that the principle virtue of this material lies in its aesthetics, one that is natural, subtle and simple, adapting itself to the diversity of techniques, cultural aspirations and skills; sometimes in response to tradition, while sometimes contemporary. Along with the artisans from Inventerre, we used earth for a completely different purpose…earthen floors! Today we tell you how it was made :
1-Earth Floor

You are probably wondering : “Which layer did they stabilize? Where is the cement?”. There is no cement, no lime, no bitumen! Only earth and linseed oil!
1. First the floor was dug and leveled with a layer of 3 to 5cm of sand.

2. Next, a 10 cm of cork board was laid for insulation purpose. Cork is a very interesting material in Europe for foundations since it is water proof, resistant to humidity and dense enough to carry some weight.

Earth Floor

The building heating system is done through the floor. Pipes are fixed on top of the cork and will be “trapped” in the slab to get the best inertia. As you can see on the photo a compression seal was also laid at the point of contact between the slab and the wall to avoid cracks and movement due to the changes of temperature of the floor complex.

3. Then comes the earth concrete. There is a debate with the word “Concrete”, we like to say that concrete is just a mix of aggregate together with a bonding agent and water. Therefore earth mixed with water is a concrete. Clay particles play the role of holding the aggregate together to form an solid mass.

Several layers of 5 cm mix were applied and then rammed to reach a final slab thickness of 11cm. The mix is composed of : 3 vol of calcareous gravel + 2 vol of earth + minimum of water to reach a semi-plastic state. Each layer is rammed by feet first and then with a ramming machine.

Water is your best friend and your worst enemy when building with earth. Put little less and you won’t get any cohesion, put a little extra and you will have fissures. Even though we put a minimum amount of water, we had to wait 3 months for the entire volume to dry! It is not like cement which will react with the water, here most of the water needs to evaporate till the earth mix has found its water balance with the surrounding materials and the air.

Laying an earth floor

4. The earth mortar is the final layer. It is around 1.5 to 2cm thick and is composed of 4 volumes of calcareous sand (0/4) and 1 volume of earth. It is the layer that will be seen and needs to be “perfect”, the slightest crack is filled and fixed before the final coating.

Finishes

Earth floor laying

5. Linseed oil is then applied 4 to 5 times to give rigidity to the floor surface and to make it water proof.

Je and shru

It is impressive to see that after applying the layers of oil, you can wipe the flour with a wet mop without altering the surface at all! Here is the final result!

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This is a restoration project of an old countryside house. The restored adobes, stone and cooked bricks and the wood are brought beautifully together by the earthen floor.

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You have to really want an earth floor in your house. It may be most ideal for living areas, reading rooms or bedrooms while kitchens and other wet areas could be a challenge. Remember that having an earth floor in any part of your house requires a special attention. It is sensitive to shocks and point load. The linseed oil coat has to be renewed every once in a while to make sure that the floor does not take any stains. If you would like more information about earth floors, please write to us

Who is Inventerre? coming up soon.

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