(June 2011) Italian producers of power tools for stone have recouped their losses incurred during the world financial crisis: 2010 showed strong growth compared to the year prior (+29,9%), and making up for almost all losses the year before (-30,8%). Turnover was 851 million €, according to a press release of the Confindustria Marmomacchine trade organization. Main consumer was China (+88%; 75.5 millionen €). Runner up was Iran (+646%; 56.8 Millionen), followed by Brazil (+252%; 51.3 millionen €). Whereas exports within the EU and USA stagnated or saw negative growth, a healthy increase was seen in the Near East (UAE +187%, Morocco +140%) and Eastern Europe (Poland +166%, Russia +53%).

Latest news: Is Barbie maybe a fan of natural stone? This question can be answered in a competition organized by the American Institute of Architects and toy-producer Mattel: Along with the introduction of the newest model of the blonde, it was announced that Barbie would like to become architect and therefore is looking for „Dream House Design“ ideas. Drafts should include an office, open living and dining areas and space for her five pets, including a giraffe. Deadline is June 27th.

New cooperation between the Spanish Centro Technologico de la Piedra (CTAP) and Morocco’s CETEMCO are in the making according to the current „Ey!CTAP“ (Spanish) newsletter.

„Designing and building with stone“ is the title of a special supplement of the March trade journal Casabella in which unusual design projects and winners of the Italian Natural Stone Architecture Prize are presented (Mail).

For a compilation of competitions and calls for proposals in Europe, artists should visit the Sculpture Network.

Transportation plays a major role with respect to carbon footprint of a product. An interactive table was developed by the French Centre Technique de Matériaux Naturels de Construction and can be downloaded free of charge (French).

Stone circles are shown in an exhibition of Richard Long, one of the Land art pioneers, in the London Haunch of Venison gallery until August, 20th.

Video of the month with no relation to stone, to free your thoughts.