Perhaps you have come across two impressive spine structures diving into the Stamp stairwell at Somerset House and seen the light pulsing along the long tail of bulbs, following your steps?

Behind this grand-scale interactive installation is the Design Engineer Nassia Inglessis, an Oxford University graduate and founder of Studio Ini.

Nassia’s work focuses on the cross-over between the digital and physical world. She built “SPINE” as an initiative to explore a new way of perceiving electricity. It consists of 132 of the new 002 LED bulbs interlocking together, mocking up the vertebrae of a human spine.


How did you go from first seeing the 002 LED to creating the SPINE?

I was intrigued about the 002’s organic bone-like structure and was driven to explore how ‘bones’ interacted in joints. The bulbs then transformed into vertebrae which fitted together perfectly to form the spine.

What message do you want to get across through this installation?

That electricity carries and translates human intent into action – both internally and externally. We are familiar with how electricity fuels an extensive network of man-made lighting. However, internally electricity also generates synapses through our spinal neural network that brings our thoughts into action. Electricity is a part of our anatomy as human beings.

With this interactive light installation I seek to draw a parallel between our own physiology and the technological environment in which we live and invite visitors to discover a new way of perceiving electricity and its consumption.


What role does interactivity play in your work and in SPINE in particular?

The SPINE is an externalisation of the workings of electricity in our bodies. I am trying to provoke the visitor to look at electricity in a new manner. Visitors witness light trail the chain of bulbs and follow their movement as they ascend and descend the staircase.

By creating a direct link between our intent/action and the control of electrical signals and the lighting environment, we put the individual back in the spotlight of energy efficiency. It was ideal to collaborate with Plumen – a pioneer in re-inventing the world of everyday energy consumption. Inspired by the Plumen 002 bulb I saw the means to underline our role as individuals in the energy cycle.


What were your first impressions of the new LED 002?

It has a unique design that embodies the notion that the low energy bulb is, in itself, an element of design with aesthetic value. Now enhanced as a dimmable LED, the Plumen 002 shows us that efficiency can look good!

Have you ever created anything like this before? How does it compare to your other work?

Studio Ini, focuses on redefining our relationship with our intangible technological & digital environment by blurring the boundaries between the physical and digital realms. These experiences and interfaces aim to break beyond the screen and display, to create innovative sensory bridges between physical and digital instruments.

The underlying driver of my designs is to create interactive interventions that can promote new prototypes of behaviour, in the fields of Healthcare, Education & Learning, Biotechnology, and Energy Awareness.

Don’t miss your chance to check out this impressive installation!