Finally we are starting the special collaboration project with www.designeast.eu, for which we prepare the special guest editor articles. We begin with an interview with Slovakian designer Tomáš Král, who works as a professor at ECAL right now and who has collaborated with us on Monster collection. We were discussing with him his last lightning projects. One part of the article you can see on www.designeast.eu, too.
You have designed several lamps. Do you like this theme? And why?
Yes that is true. Among other topics, I was always very concerned about the question of light and lightning. A single lamp is our every day object. Everyone have at least two lamps in each room of the apartment, that’s the fact. So for the designer it’s a very important subject. But it’s a real challenge to make a lamp that produces a good light.
Three of your latest projects are three lights. What they are exactly?
Yes that’s quite funny I know, but it wasn’t a real intension to design only the lamps this year. I was successively asked by different people and companies to design lamps for them. Actually, the glass lamp project began there was almost a year, but we presented it only last November. The terracotta lamp was made last summer and the metal one in January. This tree lamps are very different projects not only because the material is different, but also due the difference of clients.
Terracotta lamps are made out of red ceramics. Why did you choose this material? And what are your impression from work with this material?
Yes it’s made out of clay that is normally used to make flowers pots and bricks. This material has a very good potential because of his good resistance and very nice and natural visual aspect. However there are not so much other objects made out of this material. At the moment, this lamp is for me more a material and shape research a kind of starting point for a work with this material. It’s actually a series of prototypes and the complete new work will be presented during my next shows.
What is the concept behind the Screen lamp? What was the inspiration?
The Screen lamp is design more as a divider – space divider on the working desk for example. It’s a lighting panel that can be use in the office or at home where people share the working space and need the light. The piece was design on the occasion of Ecal’s lights exhibition at gallery Kreo and it’s more sculptural but very simple piece made out of 3 anodized aluminum plates assembled together. Everything is design to be quite slim. The LED stripes are integrated in the 6mm thick aluminum L profile and project the light to the central screen / reflector that helps to orientate and diffuse the light.
And what about the Anemone lamp?
The Anemone lamp is a limited edition designed for the 2nd edition of glass objects by Matteo Gonet, a Swiss glass blower. After his first collaboration with designers on the project of glass urns he decided to ask 5 new designers to design glass lamps that he can produce in his studio. We started to present the lamp in the gallery Triode in Paris last November. My lamp is quite organic. It’s a kind of symbiosis of 2 different glass shapes and colors that cohabiting together strangely.
Every lamp from these three projects is made out of different material. Which material was best for work with?
Yes, this 3 materials are quite different but there is something interesting particular in each. All of them are our every day use and natural materials. Glass is very impressive when the blower transform the hot and almost liquid glass material into a solid skin. He add the color and different parts but for the real result you need to wait at least one day. With the metal you have the result directly. You are in front of this big and beautiful machines that transform your metal block and produce lots of metallic shavings. It’s much more precise and that’s why I also adapt my concept this way and integrate cables and LEDs directly in the metal. The ceramic is more unpredictable material because of the shrinking and deformation. It’s actually become almost liquid while heating in the oven but glazed or natural this material have a very agreeable touch.
What lamp designs from the history are your favourite?
There is more than one. The Castiglioni’s Luminator edited by Flos which is very elegant one as well as the Vico Magistreti’s Atollo lamp. I also like a lot the intelligence of the Arco lamp by Castiglioni. In general, I’m also very impressed by the work of Gino Sarfatti.
And is something from the contemporary scene?
Well, that is maybe more difficult to decide. But one of the most useful lamps is probably the Mayday portable lamp by Konstantin Grcic. I also consider as a vey good design the Tab lamp by Barber & Osgerby for Flos and the Lighthouse by Bouroullec brothers for Established & Sons.
What do you think? What is most important to design good light?
I think that the most important is the choice of the light source. The good light is for me the one that produce very effective, agreeable and functional light for the purpose it’s intended.
Do you have some lamp ideas into the near future?
Of course, but I need to find a good opportunity to develop them.
Photos Courtesy of Julien Chavaillaz, Federico Berardi, Matteo Gonet, Tomáš Král