Solid credentials

1 June 2007

Rosskopf & Partner AG is a European market leader in fabricating innovative surfaces. Apart from its own manufacturing activities the company is also the exclusive German partner for the solid surface material LG HI-MACs of LG CHEM, South Korea.

It is on Rosskopf's often innovative application of LG HI-MACs that this feature mainly concentrates, though the company is also a supplier of Du Pont's benchmark surface brand Corian and the quartz surface CaesarStone from CaesarStone in Israel.

Helmut Rosskopf launched this business in 1984 and in 1988 Martin Funck joined him and Rosskopf & Partner GmbH was born.

In 2005 Rosskoph realised the largest project in the company's history with its involvement with the interior design of the Hotel Puerta Amèrica in Madrid, Spain.

Nineteen of the top architecture and design studios in the world, from 13 countries, were involved with the overall project of the five star hotel. A renowned architect designed each floor and Rosskopf was given responsibility from LG CHEM Europe for the solid surface areas in cooperation with leading world architects Zaha Hadid, Ron Arad, David Chipperfield, Ron Arad, Kathryn Findlay, Marc Newson, Jean Nouvel, Christian Liaigre and John Pawson.

"The Puerta Amèrica Hotel is a showcase of LG HI-MACS applications performed by us, giving an indication of what can be achieved with this unique, three dimensional material," said Martin Funck, ceo of Rosskoph & Partner AG.

The task to realise four floors in the solid surface material LG HI-MACS marked a completely new dimension in processing solid surfaces for Rosskoph.

With very short notice, all three locations of production had to be re-structured, production and logistics had to be re-organised, the team had to be expanded by 100% and the equipment (from tools to computers) had to be extended.

Perhaps the most challenging was the first floor designed by Zaha Hadid which included 28 rooms, two suites, the lobby and parts of the corridor, all completely made of solid surface material. All the visible areas apart from the flooring were fabricated out of LG HI-MACS and created in solid colours such as black, white and orange.

Ms Hadid was the first woman to receive architecture's most prestigious award, the Pritzker Architecture Prize. Using London as the base for her company, her vision is being transformed into buildings all over the world. Ms Hadid says of her interdisciplinary approach to architecture: "My ambition is always to realise theoretical projects that seem difficult at the time".

Just before the FIFA World Cup, Rosskopf completed two projects at the ultra-modern Allianz Arena in Munich, the venue of the 2006 FIFA World Cup and home ground of Bayern Munich.

In cooperation with architect Arkan Zeytinoglu (Vienna, Austria) and Bruederl Concept GmbH (Traunreut, Germany), Rosskopf created a stunning 3-D wall composition at the VIP lounge of sports betting agency BETANDWIN. The job was created with Du Pont's Corian, in the colour Sun.

The challenge of this project lay in the joint-less combination of the 2-D and 3-D formed pieces. The wall elements turned out to be the luminous centre of the VIP lounge.

The restaurant 'Arena-a-la-carte' is one of the visual and culinary highlights of the Allianz Arena. Rosskopf fabricated the striking vanity units for the sanitation facilities of the restaurant with the conceptual design being worked out by Albrecht & Partner architects, in Munich.

"The vanities most impressive feature is the top made of LG HI-MACS solid surface in the colour Volcanics Gemini," said Arkan Zeytinoglu. "The elegant look of this workpiece is accentuated by light effects from the back. This way the pure functionality of a washing facility got its finish by combining high-quality materials with eccentric looks."

The washbasins for this application came from Rosskopf's own product line Lavanto Arco (Rosskoph produces Lavanto bowls and sinks out of LG HI-MACS or Corian.)

Rosskopf has also installed two impressive counter units designed by Zaha Hadid into the newly-extended Ordrupgaard museum of Copenhagen. This housing for a private art collection in Copenhagen has been extended by Ms Hadid.

The reception counter of the museum was manufactured in solid surface material LG HI-MACs Alpine White S28. The reception counter in three-dimensional optics is also a cash point and has an integrated screen, lockable drawers and poster pull-outs all made in solid surface material.This unusual reception counter, seven metres in length, required 25 moulding shapes in the manufacturing process. The bag shelf and the swing door are also three-dimensionally thermo-formed in LG HI-MACS.

Customised monitor mounts for the branches of the Jyske Bank in Denmark have also been designed using LG HI-MACS.

The Jyske Bank recently initiated a new 'shop' system in its branches and has renovated them accordingly. The intention is to make its customers feel at home.

To complement Jyske's new image, the optical design of the monitors also plays a significant role at each of the bank counters. Using specifications given by the Jyske Bank, Rosskopf designed the monitor mounts in such a way that the monitor fits perfectly into the frame. They were produced exclusively for the Jyske Bank using the special colour S212 Light Green.

Another innovation from Rosskopf was the creation of a colossal pink bible for the German Bible Association and the publishing company Praesenz Kunst & Buch (Huenfelden-Gnadenthal).

The sculpture was based on an original bible redaction by Andreas Felger (according to Martin Luther's translation), which was published in October 2006. For more than 40 years the artist has been dealing with bible texts. His new bible contains more than 270 of his watercolours and sketches.

The bible sculpture was designed for an outdoor location, so it had to be weatherproof and still have the appearance of a real book. Rosskoph was equal to this challenge and put the project into practice.

The construction consists of waterproof multiplex covered with a 6mm layer of LG HI-MACS. To copy the linen structure of the original book in an authentic way a fibreglass layer was laminated to the surface.

The final lacquering was carried out in cooperation with joinery Benno Muenzner from Langenfeld, Saxony. In time for the Christmas season the bible started its journey through several German book stores.

In March 2007 Rosskoph manufactured counters for the Biotherm brand of cosmetic enterprise L'Oreal with the product presented in the leading Biotherm shop in Munich.

The sales booths were hand crafted from LG HI-MACS material in the colour Arctic White and consist of sheets with a thickness of 6 and 9mm. During manufacture, some of the individual elements were formed using thermal shaping.

The sales booths are used as a so-called 'discovery bar unit', where customers can test the offered cosmetics themselves. Other booths are implemented as 'your beauty corner' units, where customers can enjoy a personal beauty consultation.

The advantages of the solid surface materials made of LG HI-MACS are especially suited to the application. The well-elaborated curved surfaces of the counters and the cut-outs were formed using this material with absolutely no visible seams. The result is a three-dimensional look that makes it appear as a single piece.

For the 'your beauty corner' unit, a washbasin was integrated in the solid surface sheet. Additionally, more elements for this booth were designed and built into the unit.

Earlier this year Rosskopf presented itself at the BAU 2007 trade fair with a completely new concept. The exhibition booth itself was constructed almost entirely of materials manufactured by the company, visually demonstrating many of the existing possibilities on the cutting edge of technology in solid surface material processing.

Situated in the middle of the booth, a white igloo-like room constructed of solid surface material LG HI-MACS drew the attention of many people in the vicinity. Inside the 230m2 igloo, in addition to a kitchen, were an information stand and a consultation area. The kitchen, an impressive space-saving cubicle in itself, was separated from the other section by a two-dimensional partition with a curved sliding door, also constructed of LG HI-MACS.

Quartz surface material CaesarStone, (a product and brand of Israeli company CaesarStone, of the same name) was presented in 17 attractive Sitzwuerfeln (cube-shaped stools) that offered a place to rest.

Each of these cube seats was manufactured in a different colour representing the available colour spectrum. light tubes were placed inside each seat to accentuate the possibilities for internal illumination.

And a final word from Nick Welsh, responsible for the UK market: "Rosskopf & Partner is a perfect opportunity for the designer/architect to explore and exceed the boundaries of a material which should be seen as more than just a working surface".