By way of celebrating designer Achille Castiglioni’s centenary Italian lighting manufacturer Flos used Milan Design Week 2018 to launch re-editions of two Castiglioni designs: Ventosa and Nasa.

Objects which in their own, small, ways allow for an insight into Achille Castiglioni’s approach to, and understanding of, design.

Flos present Achille Castiglioni - If you are not curious forget it, Milan Design Week 2018

While it is generally the case that the development, evolution, of product design is dependent on the development, evolution, of technology, such is particularly the case in context of lighting design: ever since a burning stick was first employed to create a relaxing evening atmosphere in a neolithic cave, technological developments have been the driving force behind the development of lighting design, be that formally, functionally or technically.

The nature of Light + Building Frankfurt, the fact that it is much more of case of “Light in and around Buildings”, means that the majority of the projects presented are about technical lighting in architectural contexts, and in terms of technical evolution most manufacturers are atop of the game: demonstrating technical competence being a key element in any lighting manufacturers’ self-image. Does however by necessity mean that often the required functionality is largely pre-defined by the very specific nature of the usage, while the form is in many cases irrelevant.

A small section of Light + Building does however present objects of more freer nature, and there one does/could find a few design led projects which in addition to adopting technological innovation approach new formal and functional solutions and thus new understandings of what lighting can/should be. As ever we’ve not seen everything, have invariably missed one or the other gem, apologies all-round, but with that in mind, and in no particular order, our Light + Building Frankfurt 2018 High Five!!

Light + Building Frankfurt 2018: High Five!!

One of the early highlights of our 2017 #campustour was the Arc Collection by Marie Hesseldahl & Nanna Neergaard created in context of their Diploma project at Design School Kolding.

Consequently it was a particularly pleasing mødes igen with the Arc Collection at IMM Cologne 2018 where it was launched as a product family by Danish manufacturer Le Klint.

Arc Pendant Lamp by Manér Studio for Le Klint, as seen at IMM Cologne 2018

Modular lighting is a seldom encountered genre, and when it is encountered, then invariably in a very technical form, a form that implies the computer software has taken a greater role in the creative process than the designers understanding of form-giving,

There are however exceptions…..

304 by Nick Beens, as seen at Dutch Design Week Eindhoven 2017

The German designer and silversmith Christian Dell is arguably best known for the numerous lighting designs he realised during the 1920s and 1930s.

Christian Dell was however also one of the pioneers of plastic design. If all too briefly.

Christian Dell (1893 - 1974)

Ursa Table Lamp by McKenzie & Keim, as seen at Guerrilla Truck Show, NeoCon Chicago 2016

Being principally an office furniture fair NeoCon doesn’t really attract “fringe events” the way home furnishing focussed trade fairs do;

Wind powered street lighting from Vulkan, as seen at Light + Building Frankfurt 2016

As the name implies the Light + Building Trade Fair in Frankfurt is largely about architectural lighting rather than domestic

Rondella Lamp by Christian Dell(rechts), 1930s Advert *Owing to the nature of teh item we don't ahve any photos we can use... google it,you won't be disappointed)

In his Letter of Reference for Christian Dell on the occasion of his departure from the Kunsthochschule Frankfurt, the school’s

KUULA by Uli Budde for Thonet & Oligo, as seen at IMM Cologne

In the famous Thonet Card Catalogue from 1930/31 the image of the B 9 side table and B 25 lounge

Bratislava Design Week 2014 Transmission Lights Studio deFORM

At Bratislava Design Week 2014 Jakub Pollág and Václav Mlynář a.k.a. Studio deFORM re-premièred their Transmission light family; “re-premièred” because

Vienna Design Week 2014 Passionswege Big-Game Wiener Silber Manufactur

For some 200 years Wiener Silber Manufactur have produced the finest silverware. Exquisite cutlery, table services, coffee pots and sugar

Godis by Nestor Campos

As older readers will be aware one of our all-time favourite products is the table family Tints by Jason Miller.

Binic by Ionna Vautrin for Foscarini

“In a best case scenario, and when the technology is advanced enough, the opaque cover can be replaced by an

Designers’ Open Spots 2013 Porzellanatelier Biehne Passig

Although, according to our strict definition of “design” the work of Leipzig ceramicist Claudia Biehne must be considered handwork, we’re

It’s Dumfries Show on Saturday. That won’t mean much to the most people, but for us it is a sure

The Top 5 Lamps from the smow design spring. In no particular order. Kete by David Turnbridge. One of the