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2011 Young Guns - Brandon Gore

Author: Susan Regan
Issue: September, 2011, Page 68
Portrait photography by Christiaan Blok

Brandon Gore creates concrete pieces manufactured from a highly engineered composite concrete called GFRC in which glass fibers reinforce the material instead of steel. This results in a lighter, stronger and thinner finished product.


Age: 32

Profession: Concrete Artisan
Company: Gore Design Co., LLC, Tempe, Arizona

How did you get into this line of work?
I used to be director of sales for a large hotel chain. I loved it, but the stress got to me and I left the industry. Later, a magazine article on a house that I found immensely beautiful opened my eyes to building materials I had never heard of—rammed earth, concrete countertops, bamboo floors. I knew this was what I wanted to do with my life. I took a class on concrete fabrication in San Francisco, rented a space in Tempe, and spent a year building things and tearing things down. Somewhere along the way I fell in love with concrete. Now, I design everything you can imagine—light fixtures, tables, walls, tile, chairs, benches, planters, countertops, bathtubs and sinks.

What inspires you?
I look to the imperfectness of nature to influence my designs.

What is your design philosophy?
Many times what is not is more important than what is. Knowing what to take away—stripping a design to its essential components—is the hallmark of good design. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.

What is your biggest design accomplishment to date?
Having my Erosion Sink published in a national magazine. Up to that point, I had been viewed as a fabricator. Afterward, clients sought me out because they wanted what I did—my status changed from fabricator to artist/designer. That was a paradigm shift for my business, and nothing has been the same since.

What’s on the horizon?
I am in negotiations to purchase land to construct a multiunit rammed-earth residential structure.

The Concrete + Steel Bench, a collaboration with designer Brandon Williams of ModFire, combines gray concrete and steel.

This concrete vanity features a band of inlaid river rock.
Gore’s Flow Desk uses white concrete to replicate the look of a draped cloth.

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