Image credit: [re]design
LIGHTEN UP is a sustainable lighting exhibition by the London-based organisation [re]design, who have previously exposed eco design and its various processes with shows such as Good & Gorgeous? and Sit Up, during the last London Design Festivals. This year they invited us to look behind the bulb and convinced us yet again that bright ideas matter. Here a few curious lighting solutions we believe have an interesting story to tell. Photos after the jump.
Beryl + Friends and Non Standard Lamp. Image credit: [re]design
Beryl + Friends as well as the Non Standard Lamp both have the intention to [re]mind us. Their characterful designs are meant to evoke memories, so that in return you treasure them (and let them live) longer. Here the story of Beryl + Friends told by its designers WEmake.
This collection began with the discovery of a green plastic lamp with a ivory polyester shade. The words 'For Beryl' penned on the bottom of the lamp gave the project its name. Stylish in her time, Beryl found herself discarded and overlooked as new fashions left her behind. She was discovered on a second-hand stall in Deptford Market as she waited for someone to give her a new life, and recognising her potential, WEmake decided to come to her rescue.
The designers added a low-energy bulb and decided to wrap Beryl in shrink-wrap to give it a more fashionable look. A bit like a butterfly but the other way around; here the cocoon-look gives the light a more elegant appearance, without destroying its past or functionality. That way, if Beryl's original look ever comes back into fashion, the shrink-wrap can easily be taken off and reveal its old self. It didn't take long until Beryl had friends, each one different in size, shape and vintage but dressed up for contemporary sites. WEmake believe that "all designers think about the birth of a product, some consider its life. The best also keep its death in mind.".
The Non Standard Lamp by Anna McConnell is also the result of something old and dusty turned into a modern design. The designer loves to 'transform traditional pieces into classics with a contemporary feel and a humorous twist'. The Non Standard Lamp can be adjusted to the user's fancy because the hinges are non-blocking, allowing for various different shapes.
Other designs in LIGHTEN UP make us [re]spond. These are sociable designs that invite interaction and friendliness, such as Darren Donati's EUREKA, a very cute bedside table lamp. Its shade is created by the user by placing a book on the top, participating in the design. Donati believes that this DIY action creates a special, long lasting connection with the user so that he never grows tired of the lamp. The books used as shade show the user's changing taste over the years, always adapting the lamp to its moods and fashions. The small, round low-energy bulb that serves as the head of the ceramic cartoon-shaped body of the lamp, promotes its use and raises awareness that a lot of different sizes and shapes of CFLs exist.
Eureka and See Through Light. Image credit: [re]design
Our final pick is the See Through Light by designer Tea Un Kim; a great example of [re]use. Kim decided to use short-lived mass-produced items and save them from landfill. The See Through Lights are a series of lamps made from used PET bottles and old tights (an example of cheap high street clothes that dies young), but you would never say so when you first see them. Carefully worked with a scalpel, the bottle gives the shade its shape while the tights add colour and a pattern. This is a perfect example that even reclaimed stuff can be made to look great.
For more information on the products and the designers, check out LIGHTEN UP on the [re]design web site, visit Newcastle's Design Event (18-26 October 2008), or get the book Lighten Up: Switched-On Sustainable Lighting, from £24 available online. Via ::London Design Festival ::[re]design
More on TreeHugger:
LIGHTEN UP, Part 1
LIGHTEN UP, Part 2