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Design Miami/Basel 2013: Casting Light

From artificial storms to electronic innovations, five works that cleverly play with light

by David Graver in Design on 21 June 2013

It could be argued that it doesn't matter what, or who, is in any room if the lighting isn't right. The following pieces—seen among the other wares at Design Miami/Basel—emit, warp or interact with light in exotic ways. Each piece embeds functionality within artistic achievement and the future of lighting design manifests as far more than just bulb, fixture and shade.

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The "Fragile Future 3 Cloud Chandelier" (2013) at Carpenters Workshop Gallery/STEINITZ booth wraps delicate dandelion seeds around LED lights, all of which float within a phosphorous bronze structure. This latest edition of Lonneke Gordijn and Ralph Nauta's light work imagines a cloud of fire flies coated in pollen, continuing the work that they told us, in 2010, is about "the story about the amalgamation of nature and technology." The piece harmoniously maintains intricacy despite its expansive structure.

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The luminous wall sculpture "Meadow" (2013), created by Astrid Krogh and showcased at Galerie Maria Wettergren, morphs all colors of the rainbow across optic fibers, metal and light monitors in a vertical field of tall, grass-like light—peaceful yet engaging.

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Dominic Harris' "Chess Block" (2013) is equal parts abstract lighting piece and functional chessboard. Composed of 3D lasered glass, acrylic rods, mirror-polished stainless steel, LEDs and electronics, its ever-changing color scheme illuminates more than just the chess pieces. This radiant cube was featured at PriveeKollektie Contemporary Art and Design Gallery.

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Bina Baitel's "Snug" lamp series (2013) incorporates a leather skin extending from the single bulb's shade into a rug. The latter almost appears to be pouring forth from the light source. This functional hybrid was spotted at the Next Level Galerie.

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Victor Hunt Design showcased a lamp from Johannes Hemann's "Storm" series (2013). As captivating as the piece is, its process of inception bears equal importance. Hemann creates storm boxes, wherein he simulates controlled wind storms and injects adhesive and styrofoam. From this, the shapes of all "Storm" series lamps are born.

Lonneke Gordijn and Ralph Nauta photo courtesy of CARPENTERS WORKSHOP GALLERY / STEINITZ. Astrid Krough photo by Torben Eskerod. All other photos by Alexandre Corda.

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