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Cork at Nova SBE

Cork at Nova SBE

Cork coats the walls of the Américo Amorim auditorium at the recently-inaugurated campus of the Nova School of Business & Economics.

Since September 2018, the Nova School of Business & Economics, one of the most reputable schools of economics and business in Europe, has a new and large campus located by the sea, in Carcavelos.

Among the various spaces and classrooms with a minimalist design, which integrate the school building, cork is highlighted in the Américo Amorim auditorium.

As a result of a partnership between Corticeira Amorim and Nova SBE, the auditorium pays homage to Américo Amorim, an entrepreneur and visionary that transformed a family business into a world leader in the cork sector, and is also an anthem to the visual and acoustic properties of cork.

  • Cork Modules

    The walls of the new auditorium are covered with small rectangular modules made from cork, created by the renowned British product designer, Jasper Morrison, in the scope of the Metamorphosis project.


    Known as cork tiles, the cork agglomerate modules designed by Jasper Morrison present a sloping surface, which allows for the creation of different patterns depending on the position they are placed in when applied to the coating of the walls or floor.

  • The final shape

    This surface is produced by machines – the cork is removed from a block using a wear process, giving origin to the final shape.


    In addition to being visually interesting and decorative, the cork tiles also contribute to a better thermal and acoustic insulation of the spaces where they are used, adapting perfectly to classrooms.

“Cork is a material that certainly deserves to be given attention in design. Its interest resides in the combination of its traditional characteristics and its innovative technical properties.”

Jasper Morrison, product designer

Metamorphosis: new products and creative applications of cork

The alliance between Jasper Morrison and Corticeira Amorim arose in 2013, by means of the Metamorphosis project, which was designed to expand the boundaries of cork, a material that is rooted in Portugal.

Amorim and experimentadesign, who was responsible for the curation of the project, invited a dozen renowned Portuguese and foreign professionals from both architecture and design to investigate innovative, creative and state-of-the-art applications, testing the limits and exploring the potential of this unique raw material.

"More than finding new products, we aspired to make a unique and challenging reflection on the material, a catalyst to take cork to another level." 

António Rios de Amorim, Chairman and CEO of Corticeira Amorim

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"More than finding new products, we aspired to make a unique and challenging reflection on the material, a catalyst to take cork to another level." 

António Rios de Amorim, Chairman and CEO of Corticeira Amorim

“Winners of the Pritzker Prize, Álvaro Siza, Eduardo Souto de Moura and the architectural studio Herzog & de Meuro, together with the renowned architects Alejandro Aravena, Amanda Levete, João Luís Carrilho da Graça and Manuel Aires Mateus, as well as three remarkable product designers, James Irvine, Jasper Morrison and Naoto Fukasawa, were invited to participate in the project.”

The result of the work developed by the ten designers was presented to the public, for the first time, in Lisbon, at the design and architecture biennial, EXD’13, and it included not only proposals where cork was the only raw material used, but also solutions that combined cork with materials such as concrete, metal or rubber.

Jasper Morrison

Jasper Morrison is a renowned British product designer. Born in London, in 1959, he studied design at the Kingston Polytechnic Design School and at The Royal College of Art. He opened his first studio in England, in 1986, and today has offices in London, Paris and Tokyo. A multifaceted designer, he creates furniture, tableware and kitchenware, lighting, electronic products, watches and shoes. He is currently working with brands like Alessi, Capellini, Flos, Rowenta, Samsung, Sony and Vitra. His work is characterized by its functionality and minimalist elegance.


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