What’s not to love about cork? It’s pleasantly tactile, beautifully textured, insulating, and sustainably sourced from trees. This incredibly effective, versatile, and environmentally-friendly building material has been a mainstay in architecture since ancient times and its popularity has only seemed to increase over the centuries.
Cork is endemic to the southwest Mediterranean and parts of Northern Africa. It is harvested from the cork oak tree every nine years in a process that simply removes the outer layer of bark, allowing the tree to keep growing. Astonishingly, cork oak trees can live up to 300 years.
But along with its significant sustainable attributes, cork is also elastic, highly insulating, and impermeable. This makes it a great choice for floors and cladding. Its warm, natural hues make it work as a neutral tone in rooms, and its organic texture brings visual interest to a space. Here, we’ve gathered together a range of spaces and buildings that are proof that this eco-friendly material can do much more than just cork your bottle.
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