RM-3 Episode Five: Clams

RM-3 (Raw Materials 3 Ways) returns to investigate the surprising role clams, oysters, and their kin have played in how and what we build.

From ancient marine sediment compacted and pressurized over the ages to form limestone, to oyster middens—heaps of discarded shells—used to create a paste for mortar, to the stone ground to make cement-board siding, mollusks are on the menu in many of our buildings.

On this episode of RM-3, host Dan Maginn takes a deep dive into the role of shellfish in our shelters. 

Tune in to the full episode below, and keep scrolling to see the projects we talk about on the show.

Geographer Richard Campanella is a senior professor of practice with the Tulane School of Architecture. In RM-3: Clams 3 Ways, Campanella reveals how shellfish formed the backbone on indigenous communities in the New Orleans region.

Geographer Richard Campanella is a senior professor of practice with the Tulane School of Architecture. In RM-3: Clams 3 Ways, Campanella reveals how shellfish formed the backbone on indigenous communities in the New Orleans region.

Paula Burch-Celentano

Oyster middens—huge heaps of discarded shells—like this one in New Jersey have been a rich building resource in U.S. history, providing raw material for making mortar.

Oyster middens—huge heaps of discarded shells—like this one in New Jersey have been a rich building resource in U.S. history, providing raw material for making mortar.

Arthur Rothstein

Steve Raike, Lake Flato Architects

Limestone, a sedimentary rock composed of ancient marine organisms, plays a large role in the work of South Texas–based firm Lake Flato Architects. At the new addition at Witte Museum in San Antonio, limestone

Limestone, a sedimentary rock composed of ancient marine organisms, plays a large role in the work of South Texas–based firm Lake Flato Architects. At the new addition at Witte Museum in San Antonio, limestone “imparts a great sense of civic presence and permanence,” says architect Steve Raike.

Photo: Lake|Flato Architects

See the full story on Dwell.com: RM-3 Episode Five: Clams

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