The Noguchi Akari Lights are this week’s design classic pick. It’s not surprising that paper lights abound in today’s marketplace (the cheapest of which you’ll find at IKEA: VÄTE Table lamp etc.), yet there’s still something entirely special about the original designs of Isamu Noguchi. Icons of mid century design, each Akari lamp is handmade from washi paper and bamboo ribbing by the original manufacturer in Gifu, Japan. In the words of Noguchi, “the harshness of electricity is thus transformed, as if by magic, into the light of our origins – sunlight – so that it’s warmth can carry on filling our rooms after dark.”
Also, while looking around for images, I ran across this video (below) showing a craftsperson constructing a lamp, which is slightly hypnotic.
Video found via greg.org
Floor Lamp Model UF3-Q, $495.00
Isamu Noguchi, their creator, defines Akari lighting as sunlight filtered by shoji paper, a type of paper made from mulberry tree bark. In the words of the sculptor, “the harshness of electricity is thus transformed, as if by magic, into the light of our origins – sunlight – so that it’s warmth can carry on filling our rooms after dark.” – kezu.com.au
See (and purchase) the collection at The Noguchi Museum.