Printed glass featuring ceramic inks continues to gain more and more traction on the international stage as the technology progresses, and as architects embrace the possibilities offered by the colour depth and UV durability of ceramic inks.
This project in the Netherlands is no exception. Designed by Dutch architects MVRDV, this complex of office and shops is disguised as an old farmhouse, but with walls and a roof made from glass with ceramic printing. Located in the market square of Dutch town, Schijndel, the building is the end result of a campaign that began in the 1980’s to replace a structure that was destoryed in the Second World War.
MVRDV collected photographs of traditional local farmhouses to create the design which has then been printed on glass using a ceramic fritting process; the same UV stable, scratch resistant process used in ImagInk printing. Inside, the printed glass is illuminated by natural light, creating a cavernous lightbox with walls that glow with colour.
All in all, we think it’s an extremely creative, and unique approach to a printed glass facade. The only thing we don’t like is the transparent ‘blob’ treatment for windows (see photo below, the area behind the cleaner), the irregular shapes appear almost awkward against the lineal nature of the bricks. We would have opted for knocking out rectangular sections of bricks for clear space instead.