ceiling light


Installations created using Tubes from Vistosi

Tubes, from Vistosi,is tubes, but square ones! They can be employed in a variety of ways to make compositions, including attached directly to the ceiling, as above.

You can see below how they are normally mounted, with a visible metal structure:

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How to light inside a wardrobe

BCM methacrylate illuminated wardrobe rail How do you get an even spread of light throughout a wardrobe, that is efficient enough for someone to see clearly everything that is in it?

You could install spots in the ceiling pointing in to the wardrobe. But (1) you probably don't want lights in the ceiling -- too naff, (2) shelves &c. in the wardrobe may block out the light from some parts of it, (3) the person looking into the wardrobe will create their own shadow, blocking the light from exactly where they are wanting to look, and (4) you may not have enough depth between the ceiling and the top of the wardrobe doors to fit spots that are deep enough.

So, what else can you do?

frauMaier have launched Superslim to be one possible solution.

fraumaier superslim ceiling light blackThe idea is that it is, well, super slim (H38mm!), so that it can fit on the ceiling, even if it is low and the wardrobe/cupboard doors swing outwards.

Then, its LEDs cast plenty (1000lm) of warm (2700K) light. The result is a wide spread of bright ambient light that, being nondirectional, will not create shadows. Besides black (above), frauMaier's Superslim also comes in white, red and gold:

frauMaier superslim gold wall light ceiling lightYou can also put them on a wall.

But suppose you need the light source to be inside the wardrobe?

You could put xenon strip around the inside of the door opening -- down the sides and even along the top. But they cannot light the whole interior properly, particularly if the wardrobes are a good size and/or the doors are sliding doors. In a dressing room, there may no doors at all behind which to hide the xenon strip.

Fortunately, BCM Illiminazione have come up with an elegant, efficient solution -- the illuminated clothes rail!

BCM lit clothes rail

As standard, they come in lengths from 300mm to 600mm, in 100mm increments. They spread the light evenly over the full length of the rail, directly down onto the clothes hanging from it (or onto the shoes in racks below it).

Others may have done this before, but not at this high quality, suitable for luxury installations.

So, who are BCM Illuminazione? As specialists in lighting for yachts and superyachts for over fifty years, they are well-known to yacht designers but not (yet) to interior designers working on residences or hotels. So they are a very well-kept secret -- you probably don't know them, but they are hugely experienced at working in the fussiest of environments, producing technical light fittings with a quality of finish appropriate to the most prestigious interiors.

After all, any company that is located just outside Forte dei Marmi is no stranger to the desires of the rich and famous!

For example, look at their other illuminated clothes rail -- a gorgeous methacrylate rod...

BCM methacrylate illuminated wardrobe rail

...an idea that also translates into a lovely hand rail, that can be illuminated or not:

BCM lit handrail

If it is illuminated, the light comes from a proper halogen lamp in the metal section that attaches the rail to wall. There is a kit of parts that includes the elegant rounded methacrylate end caps. The main methacrylate rods can be any custom length up to 2m (then you can add another one, and so on).

The metal parts are brass, which is available in a variety of finishes -- brass, chromed, gold plated...

Don't you just want to rush out and specify a staircase?! I know I do.

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Milan 2013: Vistosi -- still the best source of really useful contemporary glass lights

Vistosi Implode pendant lights Inevitably, we all tend to remember best the unusual lights -- and bloggers to feature them -- but they are rarely the most useful. Unusual lights are only suited to unusual locations.

So the lights that are truly useful -- that we can put in all sorts of places, mix with all sorts of lights and interiors -- are not the shouty ones.

Vistosi has many really special lights in its collection (most notably the Giogali system of Angelo Mangiarotti and the Alega of Vico Magistretti), as befits this venerable company that is run by one of the leading Venetian glass families. But Vistosi is also the best source of good, well made, well priced, useful contemporary lights made of glass.

So we are going to focus in this post on a fine example that was on Vistosi's stand at Euroluce -- the Implode pendant and ceiling lights.

The first indication that it has bottom is who designed it -- Gregorio Spini, one of the founders of Kundalini. Besides setting the tone of this unusual company, he was also responsible wacky lights like Sama and others with a similar mid-century feel, such as the Ray Bow floor light. He left Kundalini in 2008 to go freelance.

Implode pendant light from Vistosi

The second indication is the clever things that are being done with glass. You have to see it to understand it, but this is how Vistosi describe it: the collection "...represents the illusion of a surface created by the implosion of a volume. The glass, due to the thickness, shows a gradation of multiple layers of white and transparent crystal."

What this means is that though it is polite -- not shouty -- it is not boring. The form is elegant,  and the glass really interesting if you take the time to look at it.

Such advantages would be no good if the luminaire was not available in useful forms and sizes. Fortunately, there are three ceiling lights...

Vistosi Implode ceiling lights by Gregorio Spini

...and three pendants:

Vistosi Implode pendant light dimensionsThe different sizes have different characters:

Vistosi Implode pendant lights

Vistosi Implode pendant light

The smallest ceiling light is described by Vistosi as a spot light, and can also be used on the wall. This would be an excellent choice for either side of a mirror -- it is Ø16cm D18cm:

Vistosi Implode glass spot light wall light ceiling light

Our problem is: how do we get you to stop, to look properly at such lights (not just these ones), and to realize in how many locations you could use them.

Particularly since they are very well made and very well priced.

Maybe this post will help, and encourage you to look at the rest of the Vistosi collection. Unfortunately, this is not as easy as it should be. Because they are not currently keeping the information about their lights up-to-date on Architonic, most of them will not appear when you do searches for glass lights in our LIGHT FINDER or on the sites of any of their resellers. To see all Vistosi's lights, you have to remember to go here.


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Milan 2013: Cini&Nils 2.0

Cini&Nils FormaLa wall light set As will become clear from these post-Milan 2013 posts, companies are responding to the current markets, which are difficult, and changing fast, in different ways. It is not always predictable who will respond in a good way, but we will be celebrating some who are.

Milan-based Cini&Nils is one of them. They are purists. they make a light fitting when such a light fitting is necessary. The requirement defines the luminaire -- how it functions, what it looks like, what it is made of. They make them very well. And there is space for beautiful detailing -- look at a particular favourite of ours, the Gradi Scrivania, for example:

Cini&Nils gradi scrivania table task lightAs a result, they have inspired passionate advocacy from the architects, lighting designers and interior designers who have understood them. This approach has also resulted in their being trail blazers, as the logic of a design has taken them where no-one has gone before -- the first 230V cable track lighting, for example.

The trouble is that most people choose a light by what it looks like, not by what it does. So Cini&Nils is reinventing itself (hence Cini&Nils 2.0) as it creates new designs that explore what is possible with LEDs.

For example, look at the picture at the head of this post. It is a composition made up from FormaLa, a flexible strip that has LEDs on one side.

Cini&Nils FormaLa wall light

You can curve it as you like. It will project light from one side, to contrast with the dark on the other.

Cini&Nils FormaLa wall light shapes

The result is bang on trend -- modules which allow dramatic effects over wide areas of wall and ceiling, depending upon the number and placing of the modules used. It will be available in four lengths -- from 138cm to 540cm.

Actually, it is bang on another trend as well -- lights which cast dramatic light effects on the surfaces around them, a trend that is also demonstrated by Naica, but with a different (random, ethereal) type of pattern:

Naica consists of 57 methacrylate rods with a square cross section arranged in a chequerboard pattern, perpendicular to the wall. The pattern in the image above is real, as is proved by this image of Naica in a real room:

Cini&Nils Naica wall light set

Of course, Naica's pattern may be too exuberant. What if you would like something more tightly disciplined? Like this, on a wall?

Cini&Nils Assolo as a wall light set

Or this, on a ceiling?

Cini&Nils Assolo wall ceiling light composition

Assolo is a simple idea -- a Ø20cm ring at right angles to the surface (wall or ceiling), with one 16W LED mounted shining back onto the surface. You can never look directly at it, so there is no glare). Have a look at this close-up picture:

Cini&Nils Assolo wall light ceiling light

Then, to show how ornamental they are prepared to be, here is Collier! How decorative is this?!

Cini&Nils Collier arrangement

Well, the answer is very decorative, of course (even when it is off).

But, being Cini&Nils, it is also clever -- a lot of thought has gone into it.

It is also modular. You start with one Ø32cm ring:

Cini&Nils Collier uno pendant light

Then you can keep adding more rings, one at a time (sort of). Here is one with three rings:

Cini&Nils Collier tre pendant light

There are two light sources. One shines down from the bottom,casting direct light onto the table underneath. The other creates diffused radiant light by shining through the rings, each of which is made up of 20 little methacrylate cubes.

A Cubist Caboche...?

So, whilst remaining true to the principles that underpin their heritage, Cini&Nils are greeting the new world of vanishing lighting retailers...smaller budgets...LEDs...new trends (modular, wall patterns) with creativity, originality and courage.

Cini&Nils are excited by light. So are Catellani & Smith. How many others are...?


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Float from Artemide by James Irvine, who died last night

James Irvine -- dezeen Sadly, James Irvine died last night at a hospital in Milan, where he had practised since graduating from the RCA in London in 1984, having gone there initially to act as a design consultant to Olivetti. He moved in the same circles as other design heroes of ours, such as Ettore Sottsass and Michele De Lucchi. He was to work with many of the world's great design-led brands, most recently Thonet and Muji.

There is a brief obituary to him on Dezeen here, that inlcudes this interview filmed in 2010.

Also sadly, for us, he did not create many lights. But he was responible for one of the finest, simple designs -- Float for Artemide.

There is a round ceiling version, Ø565mm H110mm:

Artemide Float soffitto circolare white

and a rectangular ceiling version, L1030mm or 1330mm, W230mm:

Coloured filters can be mounted at the back, in blue...

Artemide Float ceiling light circular blue

...or topaz:

Artemide Float circular ceiling light topaz

Both shapes are available as pendants. The circular version is one of the finest lights in this well-populated  classification -- nothing to be added or taken away:

Artemide Float pendant light by James Irvine

Here's the linear pendant...

Artemide Float rectangular suspension light by James Irvine

The pendant versions can also be fitted with coloured filters:

Artemide Float sospensione lineare james irvine

They have been in the catalogue since 2000. The best way to celebrate James Irvine's life, for those of us who did not know him personally, is to remember, appreciate and specify what he created.


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