Fine lighting allows you not only to introduce into your scheme items created by the world's best designers, but also a wide range of materials. The most magical material for a light is crystal. That is a statement of fact, not opinion, but crystal is nevertheless a hard sell at the moment, because of the idea of it (too traditional? too bling?), I think. This is a HUGE pity because it can lift the heart, create joy, and–hey–it usually has no colour!
The finest artist today creating contemporary designs using crystal is Roel Haagmans of Windfall in Munich.
His work can be light, delicate (not obscuring what is beyond it–a view through a window, perhaps):
But sometimes you need something more bold–to indicate where a bar is, for example:
Or something spectacular, e.g. for a club. (This is a CGI.)
Given I said crystal has no colour, I'm showing you a lot of colour! This simple, clear crystal fringe arond the top of a bar is being tszujed up by colour-changing LEDs–at this moment, set to orange:
Windfall's Hellbobs can provide a cool, smart background:
Or crystal can be cused to create simple, large installations that pull together an otherwise bitty or bland space (another CGI):
But crystal signifies "chandelier" in most people's minds. Done right, these can be cool and smart also! Some years ago, we asked Roel for "classic with a twist" and he came up with the now iconic Balance series: clear crystal chandelier components with no heavy, dense metal to support them! They can be hung in the shape of a chandelier:
...or in a more random way. Here is a cluster of Balances in a restaurant in Brussels that looks as if some of the components have decided to drift away...
...so that they can hang singly, one over each table:
In this instance, the client did want to create a feeling of luxury, so they specified rectangular versions of Windfall's Scarletts (that combine crystal with organza, in many, many choices of colour) for the entrance:
Most of these designs use small crystal components, but I like big, simple, hunks of crystal–a welcome trend this year.
It started with Serene, Windfall's collaboration with Lalique:
and was picked up by Foscarini (Newton). Windfall's new Downtown collection, introduced in Milan this year, is made up just of glass prisms and a separate metal frame around each one:
So you can do an awful lot with crystal!
It can scream luxury and extravagance, but it it is also the most beautiful material that, when combined with light, can enhance so many different moods.
The designs in Windfall's collections are a starting point: most commissions are site-specific. The catalogue is BIG, so if you'd like me bring it, and talk through options for your project, just let me know.
Click here for the Windfall digital catalogue (which does not include Downtown yet) and here for the Windfall web site. In addition, we have lots of images on our servers, from which we select when we know the kind of thing you are looking for.