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Business-card buildings: Corporate architecture and promotional strategies in buildings and projects for Eternit in Belgium (1955-75)


Medium: conference paper
Language(s): English
Conference: 6th International Congress on Construction History (6ICCH 2018), July 9-13, 2018, Brussels, Belgium
Published in:
Year: 2018
Abstract: Eternit, an important manufacturer of building products in asbestos cement and other materials, was one of the major players in Belgium's post-war building industry. As a way of product placement, seeking to associate itself with “good” and “modern” architecture, Eternit Belgium commissioned renowned architects to design the Eternit office buildings, exhibition stands and pavilions, and 1:1 model buildings. The paper reveals the strategies and project details behind this particular collaboration between the building industry and the architects: who took the initiative, what were the motivations of the partners involved, how do the built projects relate to printed promotional material, and how did the result contribute to the corporate identity of Eternit Belgium. Although the archive of Eternit Belgium is not accessible, the archives of the architects and the administrative building files, as well as contemporary publications allow the authors to asses these questions and to evaluate these buildings as full-scale business cards.

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