THE work of the late designer Achille Castiglioni is so simple, and now such a part of our design lexicon that it’s pretty tricky sometimes to see how genius it is. And sometimes it’s good to be reminded.
Achille’s Parentesi lamp (designed in 1971 with Pio Manzu) was about all that Castiglioni stood for in design – sideways thinking, simplicity, grace and lightness, and solutions. Parentesi in particular was about the versatility and portability of the naked bulb which is suspended between ceiling and floor (or table surface) on a slim wire (and moves up and down thanks to its ‘bracket’ shape holder) and doesn’t require either bulky ‘legs’ to anchor it or an electrician to fix it into your home.
However times move on and where the bulb used to be the focus of any lighting design, bespoke LEDs have become a part of the design and not the focus of it. Constantin Grcic’s new version of the Parentesi, the OK, features a flat LED surface as bulb, which is just as flexible as Castiglioni’s original version and just as attractive. Bulb and lamp head as one is where lighting is at right now. From Flos and www.atrium.ltd.uk