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Origins

 

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During the second half of the 19th century, many products derived from cement were developed. One particular type was encaustic cement floor tiles. The term 'encaustic' refers to the method by which coloured cement goes through part of the tile, creating beautiful patterns and enhancing structural strength.

Early production techniques for encaustic cement tiles used manual presses. In time the process became more efficient with the introduction of steam to operate the hydraulic presses. However, the skill in production continued, as the hands of the craftsman ensured a well finished and a high quality product.

Cement encaustic tiles grew in popularity, especially in the Modernist period. Towards the end of the 19th and early part of the 20th century, many Modernist architects designed tiles which today, still adorn the floors and facades of prestigious buildings.

In 1913, Bernat Martí i Arlandís opened his first tile workshop in Manresa, north of Barcelona. The lineage continued with his children, Bernat, Ricard and Pere.

Towards the end of the 1950’s, the demand for other flooring products (terrazzo, ceramics and earthenware) caused the collapse of encaustic tile production.

However, the quality, beauty and originality of the product were preserved and not lost. During the 1980’s, the grandchildren of Bernat Martí rebuilt the production and family tradition of encaustic tiles under the name of Mosaics Martí.

Their hard work involved restoring the traditional tile production process and, at the same time, renovating the presses and moulds, and employing traditional techniques.

At the dawn of the 21st century, Mosaics Martí endeavour to produce cement encaustic tiles that combine the artisan’s touch with the best quality raw materials. They achieve outstanding results in their tiles that will last for generations to come.

The design and quality of modernism and art deco is combined with contemporary designs and therefore suitable for any installation.

“Originality consists of going back to the original”. Antoni GAUDI.