Museum of Achille Castiglioni (Former Design Office), Milan - Tuesday, June 7th, 2011
On June 7th we visited the design office of Achille Castiglioni, which has now been converted into a sort of museum. The office seems as though it is frozen in time. While there we got to hear a lot of stories about the inspiration for his products, especially his lamps. This was especially great because the lamps seemed to pop up everywhere we went after that.
Following our visit to the Castiglioni museum, we went to the Triennale Design Museum. While there I saw two of his lamps; “taraxacum” which means “dandelion” and “parentesi” which means “parentheses”.
Taraxacum was designed to look like a dandelion fluff. The lamp uses a lot of pieces, and because Castiglioni cared about the workers making the lamp, he designed it with an easy to assemble pin system. This lamp is available in different sizes, which range from 60 to 200 bulbs. It uses A LOT of electricity!
All the components of Parentesi are attached to a bracket shaped tube, hence the name. A cable is hung from the ceiling and then strung through that tube and held in tension by a 5kg weight. The tube can then be moved up and down the cable to adjust the height of the light with ease. The light stays in position because of the friction between the tube and the cable.
Then at the Boffi showroom (kitchen and bath design company) I saw “Lampadina” which means “little bulb”. This lamp was inspired by a film reel. The shape of the base allows the user to wrap up the extra cord so it is out of the way.
Finally, at B&B Italia(a premier Italian furniture design company) I saw “arco” which means “arc”. This lamp was designed to light the centre of a table without getting in anyone’s way and allowing the users to move around the whole table. The huge marble weight has a hole in it for the user to put a broom handle through so that two people can easily lift the 65kg weight and move the lamp.
P.S. These lamps were all designed for FLOS.
By Anne Charbonneau, Amanda Cox and Laura Van Staveren