ANN SACKS® Partners with U.S. Artists Unveiling Designs that Marry Hand-crafted, Time-Honored Techniques with The Latest in Technology
PORTLAND, Ore. (November 15, 2011) – ANN SACKS, a premier manufacturer and distributor of tile launched a series of decorative glazed tiles as part of its fall 2011 new product launch. Designed by talented U.S. artists, ANN SACKS coins the series Artisan Glazes unveiling one-of-a-kind handcrafted art tiles that impart rich and diverse coloration. Drawing inspiration from age-old craft and coupling these techniques with innovative new glazing formulas has resulted in tiles of ethereal quality that impart a visual interplay of shading and texture.
One of the key components in achieving this remarkably diverse decorative tile is ANN SACKS’ acquisition of a blaauw kiln. This sophisticated kiln has only recently become available to manufacturers with super-efficient burners effecting extremely high temperatures while still allowing exceptional control over the firing process. Ecologically sound, the kiln is exceptionally fuel efficient by recouping much of the excess heat dispelled during the cycle.
Firing at “cone 6” or 2165 degrees Fahrenheit, the blaauw kiln allows ANN SACKS to increase its field sizes and heighten its production speed. It also elevates consistency in the firing to improve yields and color uniformity. Additionally ANN SACKS has spent over a year developing a clay body that fires hotter and has the capability to shrink to the same size as its Earthenware products.
Format: ANN SACKS has created a field tile program inspired by the rich, dimensional glazes found in its Kibak collection, which originally was used only to accent the decorative tiles. The new designs capture the depth of these extraordinary glazes on larger format fields.
The glazes are alive, with a dappled, multi-dimensional effect. Each glaze has its own unique character developed during the firing process – some will produce a smooth, more even color, while others will react independently creating shading variation and mottled pooling across the tile surface. There is a beautiful visual texture regardless of the decoration and with 44 percent recycle content Format also is part of ANN SACKS Eco-Thinking series, a comprehensive merchandising program that brings its most ecologically savvy products to the forefront.
Additionally, ANN SACKS adds to the existing Kibak color palette with this introduction, now boasting 76 colors and expanding the color breath to include field sizes that range from smaller installations to producing full tile canvasses. Originally only offered in an 8x8-inch field, ANN SACKS has expanded the sizes to now include 2x8-inch, 3x3-inch, 3x6-inch, 3x9-inch, 4x4-inch, 4x8-inch, 6x6-inch, 6x9-inch, and 6x12-inch fields.
Fire & Earth: A tile with dimensional wealth and variance of color achieved by the artist through a proprietary firing method, Fire & Earth is inspired by Japanese Raku glazes. Fire & Earth is available in Luster, Crackle, and Crystal options in a vivid palette of jewel-like shades.
ASC Stoneware: With the addition of the blaauw kiln, ANN SACKS will be able to produce quality stoneware and an extended field size. The new designs, available in January 2012, take its inspiration from ancient Japanese and Chinese pottery. ANN SACKS will be unveiling 18 brilliant colors to join its existing palette in winter 2011. Unique and unexpected in its beauty and depth, the glazes take on its own character dependent upon the heat of the kiln, which fires hotter than existing ANN SACKS kilns thereby producing the uneven, interactive surfaces so coveted by today’s designers and consumers.
Founded in 1981, ANN SACKS has built its reputation with inspiring designs in tile, stone, plumbing, lighting and accessories. Based in Portland, Ore., the company is a division of the Kohler Co. Interiors Group, a wholly owned subsidiary of Kohler Co., which also includes Kallista plumbing, Baker Knapp & Tubbs, Inc., Baker furniture, Baker Knapp & Tubbs Showrooms and Baker Stores, McGuire Furniture Company, and Mark David hospitality furniture.
Founded in 1873 and headquartered in Kohler, Wis., Kohler Co. is one of America’s oldest and largest privately held companies. Kohler is a global leader in the manufacture of kitchen and bath products, engines and power generation systems, cabinetry, tile and home interiors, and international host to award-winning hospitality and world-class golf destinations.
For additional information regarding ANN SACKS products, consumers can call toll-free 1-800-278-TILE or visit the ANN SACKS website at www.annsacks.com.