Brew Tiles, 2016, New Belgium Brewing Company, Asheville, NC
New Belgium Brewing Company commissioned me to make over 10,000 tiles to adorn the floor around the brewing vessels in their new Asheville, North Carolina facility. You can go on a free tour of their brewery and check out the tile work while you're there.
This project was an exploration of process. Below is the visual story. This entire job was designed around the use of a hydraulic press that I acquired several years ago. A good friend, Matt West, helped me go get the press, about 5 hrs away, facilitating the beginning of this journey. I didn’t know when I’d be able to get it running, so it waited under a tarp at Matt’s until the right job came along. I moved to New Mexico. A couple years later I was contacted by New Belgium about doing a floor mosaic at their new Asheville brewery. Realizing this was a great opportunity to try out ram pressing, I went for it. Nothing like moving across the country and bidding a job based on a process you’ve never done before! I tend to do this way too often. It was a harrowing journey. I worked 80 hours a week for two months straight, took a day off and did another two months straight. A planned 6 month job took 9. There were consequences and at times I wondered if i would survive the job, physically, emotionally, financially… I have so many people to thank for helping me reach the finish line. To get the press operational, endless questions were answered by Sean and Keith of Riverview Structural and Fabrication. Sean taught me how to mill and weld the die cases. Ray’s CNC Solutions milled the tile pattern prototypes. Hank Goodman, Jon Ellenbogen, and Matt Kelleher taught me how to make the dies—perhaps the most technically challenging thing i now know how to do. My very good friends, Dustin Fowler and Candice Hinsley slayed tile production on the regular with guest appearances from Nidal Fakhouri, Ivan Resnick, Mary Edson, Pearl Cougler, Amy Shreb, Matt, and probably a few others I am blanking on at the moment (sorry guys). The man, myth, and legend, Ted Harper showed me how to set floor tile with extreme craftsmanship. JT Gleason helped Ted and I bring it to the finish line on site. Huge thanks to Tyler Foos and Melyssa Mead of New Belgium Brewing Company and Traci Kearns of Alchemy Design Studio for trusting me to get the job done.