Quality is an integral element that all designers and artists work diligently on for a remarkable design. For Ross Gardam, being disciplined with carefully selected materials and closely involved in the manufacturing process is the key to quality output.
On the studio’s newest lighting product, Melbourne-based designer Ross Gardam has paired traditional techniques with contemporary manufacturing to create Nebulae. Inspired by the diffusion of natural and LED-produced light, the Nebulae collection explores a harmonious balance between the geometric form and the fluidity of the glass discs. At the core of the Ross Gardam design team is the belief in creating products that exude a timeless quality. This is married with a distinct curiosity for innovation that is unique to the studio.
Here Ross Gardam, founder of his eponymous studio shares insights into the process behind the enchanting Nebulae.
Habitus: Can you talk about your inspiration for Nebulae, what was the starting point or spark?
Ross Gardam: The starting point was experimenting with glass samples and light in the studio one day and discovering the amazing diffusion. Especially with the black-bubbled glass, it created such an interesting diffusion that looked like the Milky Way. We had worked with blown glass before however never formed glass, so the material definitely informed the final product.
What are some of the unique features of the Nebulae?
The diffusion of two horizontal glass pieces, which frame the light source, is the product’s most distinct feature. The soft geometric circles of the glass placed in contrast with the solid aluminium machined body create harmony throughout the collection.
What was the design process like, were there any challenges or issues to resolve when designing and developing the Nebulae?
The development of the Nebulae involved a lot of refinement and prototyping over a 12-month period to bring the product to fruition. The challenge was all around the machined rectangular element, which houses the entire electrical component, the glass and also allows the Nebulae to form modular configurations. We spent a lot of hours in the design studio refining this element and then prototyping it with my father on his metal lathe and mill. Although the glass is quite simple, we also spent a lot of time on how to process it without cracking and experimented with a lot of fastening techniques prior to deciding on the best solution.
Nebulae has a dimmable light, why is it important to allow people the ability to adjust the lighting?
Being able to dim the light source is really important; being able to adjust light levels can transform space. What I think is even more important is that the light supplies some functional lighting to illuminate a space. So many large format lighting is purely decorative, which can work in certain commercial spaces, however, does not translate to residential space. The Nebulae supplies lovely functional light levels, which can then be dimmed down to create more intimate spaces.
Can you talk through the different colours and types of glass?
We have just released a new White Pearl glass finish, which is available across the wall and chandelier collections. The White Pearl has a beautiful texture on the surface and creates a semi-transparent glow when illuminated. The other glass available is our black glass, which has a textured and bubbled finish, the blue glass, which has a rippled finish and the classic clear fluted glass.
What’s next for the range?
In mid-May, we will be showing a new horizontal version of the Nebulae collection at the New York show, ICFF. This show will see a release of the new Nebulae and also the Hemera product shown for the first time in the US. These products will sit alongside key selections from the Ross Gardam existing light collections.
Nebulae is available through StylecraftHOME
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