Shine On

The range of beautiful and smart lighting solutions available today is mind-boggling.

Vibia Wireflow Fixtures
These sculptural pendant lighting fixtures, by Arik Levy, explore geometry in two and three dimensions. Their structure is formed by thin rods and three-watt LED terminals that produce a visual continuity of lines and light spots. 

At the Euroluce exhibition during this year’s Milan Design Week, visitors had the choice of more than 2,500 lighting installations from Italian and foreign exhibitors who are embracing the latest advances in materials, technologies, and forms. The trends that dominated the show were classics reissued with LED updates; the ever-present inspiration from nature; and stylish, energy-saving decorative lights (smoky glass was big this year) that opened new possibilities to transform any space. 

Energy-efficient technologies such as LED and OLED, which were seen as experimental just a decade ago, have now become viable replacements for traditional illumination. And while the presence of the Italians dominated the fair, lighting from Spanish companies such as Santa & Cole, Estiluz, LZF, Vibia, and Arturo Álvarez also presented visually compelling and technologically advanced offerings that are competitively priced. Here’s our latest selection of products, innovations, and trends (with a lighting exhibition thrown in) that will brighten and transform the spaces where we live and work.

Vitra Lightopia Exhibition and Book
This comprehensive exhibition at the Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein (on display until March 3, 2014) and accompanying book look at technologies that are currently bringing about changes in artificial lighting. It contains roughly 300 works, including rare historical pieces by Achille Castiglioni, Gino Sarfatti, and Ingo Maurer, in addition to contemporary pieces by Olafur Eliasson, Chris Fraser, and Joris Laarman. 

 

LZF Escape-S Lamp
With self-supporting rectangles tumbling into a ring of light, this lamp by Ray Power recalls a chain of dominos falling. The natural wood shade comes in 11 colors. 

Delray lighting RLM P1 Pendant
This pendant light has a galvanized canopy mounted on an octagonal box, with a ballast for easy servicing. It comes in several lighting intensities, from a 13-watt quad fluorescent tube to a 150-watt incandescent bulb, in black, green, white, and custom finishes. 

Flos OK Lamp
Konstantin Grcic’s OK lamp is based on Pio Manzù’s original idea of creating a “light source that can slide vertically from floor to ceiling and rotate 360 degrees on its axis.” Instead of an incandescent bulb, Grcic’s version uses an ultra-flat LED surface. It will be available in 2014. 

 

Arturo Álvarez Muu lamp
Álvarez’s table lamp is inspired by the animals that men work with in the countryside, and is a tribute to their unrecognized hard labor.  It comes in five colors and two sizes. 

Fontana Arte Yupik
Form Us With Love’s utilitarian-looking Yupik portable lamp can also be used as a pendant, a table light, an uplight, or a torch. Its housing is made of sturdy, lightweight polypropylene foam, and it’s available in pale gray and black. 

B.lux Hoodie Lamp
Werner Aisslinger’s lamp recalls vintage designs of the 1960s, and is available as a table, floor, or wall light, in white, black, and beige finishes. 

 

Vondom Vela Collection
This modular furniture collection, by Ramón Esteve, seems to float off the ground and can be illuminated, transforming the pieces into light architecture. They are made of fully recyclable rotation-molded polyethylene, and can be used indoors or out. 

Bover Amphora-02 lamp
The synthetic fiber handmade baskets that make up Alex Fernández Camps and Gonzalo Milà’s Amphora collection of freestanding outdoor lighting come in four colors. 

Santa & Cole Cesta
Designed originally in 1962, Miguel Milá’s Cesta (shown) and its smaller sibling, Cestita, are reminiscent of magic handmade lanterns, with a cherry wooden structure and an inner light globe, making it ideal for both tabletops and floors. It is now available with an optional LED lightsource fitting. 
 

 

 

Lladró Belle de Nuit Collection
This new line of ceiling, tabletop, and wall lamps is based on the classic crystal chandelier, but is instead made of porcelain. It comes in various formats and a spectrum of colors—white, pure tones, combinations of colors, and gradated tones. 

Lee Broom Fulcrum
Lee Broom’s monolithic candlestick, available in two sizes, is a play on the concept of pivots and supports, with a cylinder that appears to balance on a central sphere, crafted from solid optical crystal. The color from the base refracts through each piece, creating varying effects when viewed from different angles. 

Kettal Pussel Collection
Pussel started off as a game between 12-year-old Xavier Mañosa and his father, where they created ceramic shapes in different colors that stack together. Made from high-temperature ceramic and blown glass, the pieces from this collection can function as lamps, vases, and candle holders. 

 

OLuce Semplice 226
As the name would suggest, Sam Hecht and Industrial Facility eliminated the most characteristic components of this table lamp, such as the base and stem. Sitting directly on the table, its blown glass and galvanized metal structure, which is painted white on the inside, is topped with a dimmer knob. 

Estiluz Kant A-320 Wall Sconce
This metallic wall sconce has a swing arm with an adjustable head and uses an eight-watt LED bulb. 

Martinelli Luce Pipistrello Lamp 

Gae Aulenti’s iconic Pipistrello table lamp for Martinelli Luce, first launched in 1965, is reborn with a new, more modest size and a fluorescent retrofit. 

Waterworks WATT Wall-Mounted Single Arm Sconce
Inspired by the countless shapes and colors of telephone pole insulator covers, the Watt collection features two styles of large-scale molded boron glass shades in clear, amber, or blue. They are available as sconces or pendants. 

 

All photos courtesy the manufacturers and designers.

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