Copper architecture

Copper was one of the first metals used by man and is one of our oldest building materials, with unique properties and characteristics.

With the twentieth century and the international modernist movement came a transformation from copper’s historic role as a durable roofing material to a flexible architectural skin over any surface, including walls. The malleability of copper sheet allows it to be used as a covering for architectural elements of all shapes with minimal constraints. Surfaces can be flat, curved or faceted and used at any inclination or pitch, and in any environment. As a result, modern architects focused on copper as a comprehensive wrapping to enhance buildings’ form and maintain material continuity.

Our expertise and personal service are essential to developing your architectural visions in copper and we welcome early involvement with your projects.

Architectural opportunities

Copper can provide a complete external skin, wrapping around complex building forms with material continuity. Alternatively, it can give distinctive character to individual facade or roofing elements, particularly when used in conjunction with other high-quality materials. Furthermore, there is growing interest in the use of copper for interior design.

In addition to standard copper sheet, Aurubis explores new forms of copper architecture with designers, including textured surfaces, profiled sheets and pressed surfaces. Also, perforated or expanded copper sheets and woven mesh add new possibilities for transparency. Installation techniques and systems also help to define architectural character with texture and scale – ranging from traditional standing seam sheet installation techniques to panels, cassettes and other factory-made systems. Aurubis copper Forms and Systems are discussed in more detail later.

The natural color changes leading to the development of copper’s distinctive blue/green patina continue to fascinate architects and inform the development of Aurubis’ Nordic Surfaces.