August 2011

Since 1954 the Compasso d’Oro has recognized forward-thinking products, modes of production, and cultural pioneers of Italian design. Issued by the Italian Association for Industrial Design, or ADI, the Compasso d’Oro for International Lifetime Achievement is one of the most prestigious honors a designer can receive. Having spent 45-years sculpting light in unexpected ways, Ingo Maurer is a celebrated recipient of this years’ award. A longtime friend of Luminaire, Ingo Maurer revealed exclusively to an American audience for the first time at Luminaire and contributed a one-off piece for the 2009 PaperLove (link) exhibition. Pieces like Early Future Lamp, the first table light to use Organic LEDs, embraced the technological avant-garde. Cross-cultural collaborations have likewise resulted in many remarkable products, both in technique and concept. MaMO Nouchies, a collection of lamps inspired by Isamu Noguchi and made of handmade paper, are light, ephemeral and as much works of art as they are sturdy, functional pieces. His most recent fixture, Johnny B. Butterfly, presents a bulb encircled by two butterflies and dragonfly, all handmade by an American artist. Maurer’s body of work shows us that the everyday can and should be magical, and that the magical can and should be in harmony with technological advances.

Photo: Artcurial, Paris. (c) Ingo Maurer GmbH, Munich.