Basel 2017 – Swarovski and Design Miami/ invited the three winners of the Swarovski Designers of the Future Award to showcase their lateral-thinking projects at Design Miami/ Basel 2017. Japanese studio TAKT PROJECT designed vases and candle holders made from 3D printed crystal, Jimenez Lai upcycled production waste to create innovative surfaces while Dutch designer Marjan van Aubel applied solar cell technology for a sustainable statement.
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Responding to individual briefs reflecting their different fields the designers have been inspired to craft a new prototype or design statement that uses Swarovski’s diverse resources and to respond to the uniting theme of ‘Shaping Societies’.
Ice crystal by TAKT PROJECT
Tokyo-based TAKT PROJECT teamed up with Tel Aviv company MICRON3DP to create a set of vases and candlestick holders made from the ground-breaking world first in 3D printed crystal. The technology allows to produce shapes and surface textures not achievable with traditional crystal glass molding, blowing or cutting.
The pieces elevate the beautiful reflection and refraction of light during the crystal polishing process to artistic expression. “Ice Crystal presents a new way of thinking that will be part of shaping the way that societies interact with and respond to light in the future.” Explains Satoshi Yoshiizumi, lead designer at TAKT PROJECT.
Terrazzo Palazzo by Jimenez Lai
Asked to design the unifying installation housing all the Swarovski Designers of the Future winners’ concepts, Los Angeles-based Jimenez Lai has created Terrazzo Palazzo, a palazzo-style architectural setting formed by freestanding structures incorporating upcycled crystal.
The installation uses so-called ‘second quality’ crystal which has not passed Swarovski’s stringent quality control due to minor imperfections, not usually visible to the naked eye. “Second quality crystals are an entirely new material for us to work with, and we’re delighted to have been able to create an innovative surface that sparkles and shines to bring the outside in.” Commented Jimenez Lai, founder of Bureau Spectacular.
Cyanometer by Marjan van Aubel
Dutch designer Marjan van Aubel presented Cyanometer, a series of three living light objects. Inspired by the fact that the sun, in just one day, can provide enough energy to supply the world’s electricity for an entire year, van Aubel focused on sustainability by incorporating solar cell technology in crystal. Sunlight is harnessed via a portable crystal solar panel that is carried by the user throughout the day.
The panel is composed of a solar cell integrated within a facetted plano-convex crystal which collects and directs the reflected and refracted light to enhance the efficiency of the solar cell technology. The energy stored within the crystal solar cell is then used to power the light sources in the home. “This project has enabled me to develop an aesthetic solution towards a new way of energy harvesting for the future.” commented Marjan van Aubel.
The installation celebrates the coming together of architecture, technology and product design with beautifully considered, socially conscious commissions that reflect Swarovski’s evolving brief for this award, which is being sponsored by Swarovski in partnership with Design Miami/.
Designers of the Future Award 2017: all photos by Mark Cocksedge – Courtesy of Swarovski.