For the University of Michigans Ross School of Business, Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates (KPF) used terra-cotta both as visual punctuation for the glass-and-aluminum curtainwalls and in a rainscreen system for the large planar surfaces. The apparent differences in tile color are due to the fact that some of the tiles have vertical flutes that point to the right, while others have vertical flutes that point to the left.
Payette used a terra-cotta rainscreen system to cover the entrance face of the Meditech Computer Science Building. In addition to offering a contemporary riff on the areas historical architecture (mills built from stone), the terra-cotta absorbs the sun's heat, insulatating the interior with an R-value of 12.5.
DiMella Shaffer used terra-cotta (at right in photo) on about 25 percent of Crimson Hall. The tiles' sandy color and size—14 inches high by 4 feet long—provide a sharp visual contrast against the smaller red bricks.