design, stars of lighting design

Bold from Brooklyn

Photo by Scott Benedict

Knotty Bubbles by Lindsey Edelman. Photo by Scott Benedict. Source: Roll & Hill

BROOKLYN, NEW YORK. We are inspired by bold forms of lighting fixtures made by a Brooklyn-based Roll & Hill, a studio founded by Jason Miller in 2010. Miller’s vision was to make lighting for American market. European brands that dominated the market at the time had, to designer’s view, alien aesthetics to American consumer. Comfortable, rich, solid, simple, durable — are what was sought after by the US lighting aficionados.

Roll & Hill is not after mass market and makes one fixture at a time. Their web-site states 16 weeks production time. Fittings are made by hand and the studio collaborates with several talents from around the area: Lindsey Edelman (her Knotty Bubbles above) or Rosie Li (the fixture below was inspired by the famous painter Frank Stella, below).

Stella Hexagon by Rosie Li. Source: Roll & Hill

Stella Hexagon by Rosie Li. Source: Roll & Hill

James Miller designs are rich in historical context. Endless (photograph below) is brought from 70’s approach when large graphic elements were taken into architecture. This product comes in a variety of options and materials. Studio craftsmen use contemporary light sources. We have noticed the use of LED bulbs (though further specs missing) and typical for the US Triac (or thyristor) dimming. European or Middle East specifications would ask for DALI for better controls integration.


Endless by Jason Miller. Source: Roll & Hill

We wish Roll & Hill further success around the world, and hope one day to see their creations live!

Sources: Roll & Hill website, Fast Company, Port Magazine

architecture, 照明, design, energy, lighting

Architecture inside out

Centro de innovacion by Elemental

SANTIAGO, CHILE. Alejandro Aravena and his collaborators from Chilean architectural bureau Elemental reduced normal energy consumption of the building three times. Here is how. They had turned it inside out. When conventional structure would have its core inside, Elemental architects thought they should replace glazing with concrete walls, but have glazing directed inwards.

Natural light would still be pouring inside the building through a massive skylight and large openings in the outer core. This reverse solution helped to reduce the energy to fight the heat, but the glaring daylight also yielded.

This innovative idea serves well to the purpose of the building, an Innovation Centre of San Joaquín Cam­pus, Uni­ver­si­dad Católi­ca de Chile. There is always a tad bit of secrecy over any innovation. At first. Then it opens to all. Aravena’s Centre is the same: it opens to those who enter — transparent glazing and partitions facing sun lit atrium.


“We multiplied the meeting spaces throughout the whole height of the building using the triple height recessed windows as elevated squares,” say architects. Vertical circulation serves the spread of knowledge too. Think how much you could know moving up and down and seeing what is going on!

The fact that stuns us is that the Centre uses only 45kW per square meter per year. A normal glass shell — 120kW/m2/year! This  innovation definetely worth spreading to the Middle East.

Sources: image courtesy (exterior), (interior); text references

design, lighting

Kandy Kolored Tangerine

Mira-X by Verner Panton

Mira-X by Verner Panton

We often write about cutting edge technology, and today we give a way to some steam-punk! This is a Verner Panton pendant fitting that is allegedly belonged to his Mira-X collection. Mira-X featured 8 basic colors with eight grades of intensity, split into five motifs. Models for the exhibition photo-shoot wore only leggings. This was a real kandy kolored tangerine flake streamline, baby!

照明, design, effects, science

A stretching synthetic opal. Expect it soon


Material that changes color when stretched. We have already posted about the lab in Cambridge ( that plays with nanotechnology, and would like to talk a bit more on their particular inventions. 

Iridescent colors are achieved through zillions of sub-micron shells arranged into a crystal structures. Although synthetic opals have been fabricated in the lab for over two decades, the samples are brittle and aren’t suited for mass market applications.

The lab has come up with making crystals from spheres that have a soft outer shell, sort of a chewing-gum. A real advance is that they can make these photonic crystals by standard plastic manufacturing techniques. They are flexible, making them some of the most durable opalescent materials available, and they are suited for mass production and incorporation into consumer items.

We can see these polymers used widely in interior decoration and fabrication of furniture and lighting. What would you use them for?

Originally posted on Light Intelligence Facebook Page in Jan 2014

comfort, 照明, lighting, science, visual

If Light Is Not What You Expect

DUBAI, UAE. A question from a client has recently prompted to digg into a question why dimming LED does not feel like dimming conventional halogen spotlights. They have refurbished a restaurant and replaced spotlights with halogen lamps to LEDs. The effect did not impress: instead of warm ambience the client got pale dull environment.
The phenomenon of warmth in a dimmed halogen lamp is achieved through cooling down the tungsten filament. Less current passing through it gives out a redder spectrum of the light. Naturally we are expecting warmer hues from lesser light!
LED light source uses a different physical mechanism: electroluminescence. Halogen lamp is still incandescent in its nature. There is no major change in the color of the light when the current passes through an LED die. This change, in fact, is not discernible to the human eye. The color of light in an LED depends on the chemicals used to coat the LED die, and not on the thermal radiation.
Hope we have not yet lost you by the fourth passage. Because here is the good news:  the industry has a solution to offer. LED Engin from the USA has developed a light source which combines several dies driven separately which helps to imitate a shift from 3000K to 1800K (your incandescent lamp is 2700K, and your candle is 1700K).
Adopted from LEDs Magazine
Originally posted on in Nov 2013