Minarc often covers its homes (including the one shown above) in Cem-Clad panels, which are produced from 72 percent portland cement and 20 percent recycled cardboard fibers. Their manufacturer claims the decorative panels are insect- and abuse-resistant, making them suitable for interior and exterior applications. The 4-foot-by-8-foot boards can be cut, routed, and machined with standard carpentry tools and accept both paints and stains. U.S. Architectural Products, 888.238.2541; www.architecturalproducts.com.


tryggvi thorsteinsson, assoc. aia, and erla dögg ingjaldsdóttir, assoc. aia
santa monica, calif.