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This spring, Astro Lighting launches its first ever capsule collection of design-led, limited edition pieces. Designers James Bassant and Riley Sanders reveal their creative process.
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Created by Co-Founder and Design Director James Bassant and Senior Designer Riley Sanders, the collection’s three products – the Orb, io Pendant and Halftone – are designed to be both contemporary and timeless. The design process was unique to each product within the collection; from the materials and production processes used, through to the individual challenges that had to be overcome.
Inspired by the mechanical perfection of an Orrery, the Orb light presents an illuminated spherical ball, with a fully adjustable and magnifying mirror that ‘orbits’ around the luminaire at its centre. Primarily designed to be positioned alongside a bathroom mirror, the Orb provides useful task lighting with an appreciable sense of design, and can be partnered with the single Orb light.
‘Mechanical machines have always fascinated me; gears, cogs, chains and their interactions in analogue mechanical devices,’ said James Bassant, Astro’s Co-Founder and Design Director. ‘Mechanical perfection seems crystallised in an Orrery, a mechanical model of the solar system and at its centre my other design obsession, the sun.’
A key focus for Astro is the engineering of each product – the products need to operate effortlessly so the user does not consider the engineering solution behind it. This is true with the Orb where the delicate moving parts are robust but with a sense of lightness, masking a complex engineering solution behind its simplicity.
The io Pendant light takes inspiration from the fluted detailing of the ancient Greek Ionic pillars. Using th production process of gravity-fed glass extrusion, the io Pendant takes a circular 2D design and extrudes the glass downwards to create a perfectly ribbed cylindrical form.
‘With the io Pendant, we’ve tried to strip out all of the unnecessary components, and keep it as simple and minimal as possible, to really let the glass be the hero of the product and allow light to subtly reflect and refract,’ said Riley Sanders, Senior Designer.
A fusion between art, technology and science, the Halftone wall light focuses on the simple form of a circle with an engaging etched pattern on a translucent, clear acrylic. Its subtle, gradient etched pattern begins from the edge of the disc and increases with intensity, creating a vibrant ring of light. The transparency of the acrylic allows the wall to still be visible, both when the light is switched on or off.
Designed in two sizes and depths, Halftone can be layered to produce more intense and striking illumination that will add interest to the surrounding architecture.
‘The concept for the Halftone began as a basic pencil to paper sketch, focusing on the simple form of a circle. I then started to look at how an engaging, etched pattern could be used to bring translucent, clear acrylic to life,’ said Riley.
Designed exclusively in Britain, Astro Lighting designs and produces contemporary lighting for hospitality, residential and commercial markets.
The Capsule Collection Volume 01 by Astro is available now.
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