The Pinacoteca Giovanni e Marella Agnelli presents A Passion for Jean Prouvé, an exhibition devoted to the furniture and architecture by the French designer Jean Prouvé from the collection owned by Laurence and Patrick Seguin.
Laurence and Patrick Seguin discovered the work of Jean Prouvé, in the late 1980s, through his furniture designs. They were immediately struck by the unique aesthetic of these pieces, where the artistic skill lies wholly in imperceptible technical mastery devoted to enhancing the strength of the materials. While at the time very few people had even heard of Jean Prouvé, their enthusiasm for his captivating lines was immediate, a revelation that became a true passion.
The couple then began to take an interest in Jean Prouvé’s work as a whole, of which the furniture is only a part, going on to discover his architectural designs. With the idea that “there is no difference between constructing a piece of furniture and constructing a building”, Jean Prouvé applied the same design approach to both fields, basing all of his work on it.
From the opening of their gallery in Paris in 1989, Laurence and Patrick Seguin began to work in earnest promoting the creations of Jean Prouvé, with the result that the most important international collectors and the most prestigious museums now have works by the French architect and designer in their collections. Indeed today Jean Prouvé is held to be one of the key exponents of twentieth century design.
Laurence and Patrick Seguin are now presenting a number of works from their private collection for the first time: around 40 pieces by Jean Prouvé, most of which are prototypes or extremely rare, from the armchair designed for the University dormitory of Nancy in 1932 to the light armchair created for the University of Antony in 1954, to the furniture produced for Africa.
The same principles of functionality and rational fabrication that the designer applied to furniture often destined for the public sector, can also be found in Prouvé’s architectural designs: the same solid structures feature clever mechanisms for assembly and organisation that enable both the furniture and the constructions to be easily moved, disassembled and modified.
The Maison Metropole (8×12 meters) is now to be mounted for the first time on the Lingotto track. In 1949 this aluminum construction won a Ministry of Education competition for “mass-producible rural school with classroom and teacher accommodation”: a masterpiece of nomadic housing, followed the portico principle patented by Prouvé in 1939. The Ateliers Jean Prouvé built two of them, one in Bouqueval, near Paris, and the other in Vantoux in Moselle, which will be on show in Turin.
Taking four people three consecutive days to assemble, a stop-motion film will be made of the construction process, with video footage streamed over the internet.
A Passion for Jean Prouvé: From Furniture to Architecture, Torino, Italy
April 6 – September 8, 2013, Galerie Patrick Seguin
Exploring geometries in two or three dimensions, Arik Levy designed for VIBIA the pendant lighting fixture Wireflow, an authentic sculpture of light in space. Wireflow reinterprets from a contemporary and original point of view the classical hanging luminaries, thanks to geometrical configurations able to integrate with other compositions and create a light installation with a unique character. Its structure formed by thin rods and LED terminals (3W) produces a visual continuity of lines and light spots, which provides the immaterial with a notable objectual character. According to Levy, Wireflow is in the mean time presence and absence, transparency and luminosity, light and fluidity.
Wireflow Pendant Lighting, by Arik Levy, for VIBIA
Carl Kleiner has completed a series of product photography for the lighting brand FLOS.
FLOS, by Carl Kleiner, at MINK MGMT.
Ascent uses the same archetypical head found on Counterbalance (Luceplan 2012), mounted on a slender vertical stem. By moving the head along the stem, the light intensity goes from being turned off at the bottom position, to gradually ascending to the full light output at the top. This gives the user control over not only the light intensity, but also the spread of the light.
The visual elements of Ascent are all recognizable, from the classic head to the round stem, but it is the way you use Ascent that makes it different from existing lights. The gesture of sliding the head upwards for more light and down for less is a conceptual idea, but at the same time an action that feels natural.
Ascent comes in two versions, with an anchor bolt for tables, or with a base. The anchor bolt is made impact resistant by having a co-molding of steel and rubber in the base, allowing up to 15 degree of tilt of the stem. As to protecting the inner mechanics and electronics the head is made to rotate freely. These measures make Ascent suitable for larger public spaces as well as for domestic use.
Ascent, by Daniel Rybakken, for Luceplan
Jar RGB is a lighting project connecting thin colorful glass blowing techniques and the idea of RGB color mixing. Using white glass for one of the hanging jars allows it to turn into a large light bulb generating the light for the entire fixture. Observing one jar through another and the space surrounding them gives one a unique and everlasting discovery of color superimposition.
Jar RGB by Arik Levy for Lasvit
Hood is a sheltering lamp that creates both room and light. Much like the recent Plug lamp, Hood is built on necessity. Once again bringing a dual function light, Hood meets the basic desire of shutting things out and concentrating light on secluded areas like work-, conference- or dining tables. At the same time, the three-piece modular function lets you build the Hood to whatever size you need. Starting with basic corner units, one can add the compressed industrial felt sheets to scale the pendant for an extensive illuminating form.
“The Hood lamp is more than a lamp. Itʼs a piece of furniture – the size and material has an interesting effect on the atmosphere, making the piece feel so much more than just a pendant lamp”, says Form Us With Love.
Hood Lamp, by Form Us With Love, for Ateljé Lyktan, Photography by Jonas Lindström
With an unadorned exterior our studio has created Vinge, a table lamp with a movable wing that encourages interaction. The function of dimming the light is moved to the wing – which can be rotated 180° around its own axis – making the sweeping experience of increasing or decreasing brightness highly tactile
Vinge Lamp, by Note Design Studio, for Örsjö Belysning
“The Fluid lamps were designed to evoke a specific material by the use of light. They become supple and malleable, like fused glass contained inside a metal sheath.”
- Noé Duchaufour-Lawrance
Although Japan boasts of many outstanding traditional craftworks, the majority of these craftworks are endangered. One of them is the paper lantern called “Chouchin”. An effective means to help these lanterns to survive into the future is by utilize them. Here, we designed lighting equipment for the Gifu Chouchins famously known to have a history of about 500 years ago.
For many years an aesthetic called “Innei Raisan” (In Praise of Shadows) had existed in Japan. Nevertheless, we often see light spreading across uniformly at every corner to overcome darkness. In such an environment, it is difficult for Japanese to maintain a keen sensitivity to beauty, which has continuously been passed down from generations to generations.
Strangely enough, the power saving deployed after 3.11 (the Great East Japan Earthquake) reminded the Japanese people of the spirit of “Innei Raisan” (In Praise of Shadows). We now know that the humble and gentle charm of light we rediscovered when saving power is enough for us. In that regard, we designed Chouchin Lamp as we felt it was necessary for light to reflect Japan in such a situation.
In Japan, the idea that worldly things do not last long is now to taking roots. Japan has come to see beauty out of the fragility of temporary things. We incorporated this specific idea into our design and hope that Chouchin Lamp will introduce the beauty of tradition into your living space and bring back the light reflects Japan.