The post-granite age
Concrete in the hands of an artisan or even an industrious do-it-yourselfer sheds its gray, institutional image and takes on color, polish and presence in a variety of roles.
by Steven Barrie-Anthony
In Fu-Tung Cheng’s hands, a formerly cold, gray, rough material of little aesthetic charm is transformed into surfaces smooth enough to lay your cheek on, into lavender and rust and celadon-colored counters that dip and curve into sinks and basins, into a critical element of home design.
Concrete, the stuff of cinder blocks, sidewalks and freeway overpasses, is moving into high-end kitchens and bathrooms whose owners, like developer Wendy DeCenzo of San Francisco, are “way, way past granite.” On the leading edge of this innovation is Cheng, whom architect Will Bruder calls “the master of the craft of concrete on a residential scale, bar none. Nobody even comes close.”