23 August 2013

End of the mystery is....

Following on from the last post this is what happened after the umbrella "comes to life"...

people suddenly gravitate towards the warms emitted by the light... 

complicated shadows adds to the sense of space 

Now there is a story behind this.

In Japan, traditional umbrellas are made of coated Japanese paper (washi), its structure out of a single log of bamboo, sliced into fine "bones".  It is an intricate art form, past down through generations over hundreds of years.  Unfortunately like many other traditional crafts slowly replaced by their modern reinventions, the traditional umbrella making is of no exception - there is now only 1 traditional umbrella maker remaining in Kyoto, Japan.  In order to survive, the umbrella maker Hiyoshiya ventured into other fields, and started developing their own range of light fittings based on the skills of umbrella making.

It was by chance that this collaboration between Facet Studio and Hiyoshiya happened.
We were contemplating on how to create cosy atmosphere in a large irregular lobby, and when we saw the bones of the umbrella we decided to put the focus on the beauty of this traditional craft in its most recognisable form.

Each Higasa lamp is 1.6m in diameter, the longest a straight log of bamboo can be sourced.  We tested extensively on how we should expose the bones without deviating from the umbrella reference.... the way the washi is gapped and alternating on either side of the bones is to:
1. ensure the compactness when the lamp is in retracted condition - this affects transportability
2. provide screening to light source in preventing glare
3. provide a backdrop for shadows of the bones to be casted upon

The hardest reality being running electrical cables into the bones....and locating the light source in a certain location to ensure the shadows are cast the way we want (but of course I am not going to tell you how....).  None of this is to be visible..... and again nothing is accidental.

Higasa lamp is a light fitting designed by Facet Studio.

detail of the final fittings
photo (c) Eugene Wu

us setting up the Higasa lamps on site....

at the actual event for which Higasa lamp was designed for
photo (c) Eugene Wu

To see more photos of Higasa lamp HERE

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