This lamp may look like it’s been stolen from the laboratory of a mad scientist, but this ingenious object is the creation of Romanian freelance photographer & lighting designer, Andrei Ignia. The industrial object enthusiast started a long-term love affair with the light during Bulb27, a project centred entirely around light bulbs. Let’s hear a bit more.
What is the Bulb27 Project?
Bulb27? It’s a visual mix that brings together photography, video and lamps. These three directions are of course different, but they have the same “core” using light as raw matter. I started to create all these lamps under the name Bulb27 after I saw a photo on the Internet with a Kozo lamp that made me ask myself how I could make one. After that, my goal was to create twenty.
The purpose of Bulb27 is to explore different and almost forgotten crafts and objects and put them in a different light. It’s not a process of up-cycling but rather a memento.
Through this project, I also discovered a small but growing community of product designers from Romania, community that found its home at Dizainar – concept store.
Do you create each lamp to showcase a specific light bulb?
I use different light bulbs because every lamp has different things to say. For my first collection, I chose objects that were meant to be lamps, after that I decided what light bulbs I should explore. The first step was to search for a different light bulb – “The” light bulb. Thus I discovered Edison vintage incandescent light bulbs and Plumen 001.
It feels like each lamp tells its own story. Is this something you think about while creating them?
Each industrial or vintage lamp comes with its own story. As you can see, I used a wooden shuttle from a textile factory from the former German Democratic Republic, or a poppy mill grinder from ex Czechoslovakia. My only purpose is to find the perfect match between these objects, light bulbs and auxiliary materials.
How do you choose and source your raw material?
All these objects came from collectors from different countries and I can’t find them everywhere. I searched for all these objects in flea markets, rag fairs and concept stores from Frankfurt, Amsterdam, London and Iasi -Romania. The “goldmines” are in Amsterdam! Those people really have a sixth sense for design!
Could you tell us a little about the inspiration behind Robochinal?
The Robochinal lamp is a mix of Frankfurt and Amsterdam. In Frankfurt, I found this huge old jar that was used in drugstores, when I was mad for glass bell dome jars (used in taxidermy) because, in my mind, they were the perfect display case for light bulbs. But after I bought it I realized that vintage Edison light bulbs did not look right, as the glass was to smoky.
After a couple of months, I discovered Plumen 001 in a concept store in Amsterdam and suddenly realised what Robochinal should look like – a laboratory glass jar that keeps away a radioactive matter. Why is Plumen reminiscent of radioactive matter? Because its perfect light and curved lines create a feeling of constant movement.
Robochinal lamp was recently sold in an auction, but below is a small glimpse of Andrei Ignia’s new collection “Type. Typography & Coffee”. You can find more information on his website.