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New Textile-Inspired Terra Cotta Screens Can Dress Up Buildings in a Flash

And it could have interesting implications for the way we build

The world of architectural cladding can be rather staid and serious, but lately we've noticed an assortment of eye-catching structures—from retail stores to private residences and cultural institutions—covered in tile, glass, metal, plastic, and more.

Now, a New Jersey-based terra cotta rain- and sunscreen company, Shildan, is throwing their name into the cool-cladding ring, unveiling Fabrik, a line of textile-inspired, customizable, masonry-and-stainless-steel-mesh screens that can be "draped" over a building. The company showcased the collection at this year's AIA Convention in Philadelphia. "Fabrik affixes to any wall in massive sheets," Shildan wrote in a release, "creating an instant facade or interior screen." Rad.

Shildan touts Fabrik's sustainable production (in a methane-fueled facility) and ease-of-installation as major selling points—as they should—but we're also very into the way it looks. The screen take on a different graphic, geometric vibe on each new structure (a few of which can be seen below), and comes in a variety of colors and arrangements.

To boot, the product has implications for how buildings are constructed: Because Fabrik eschews the traditional mortar used in masonry, the sheets can be shipped to the job site in bales or flat-packed and installed via crane, rather than brick by brick.