Superlight by Pablo Designs
Designed by Peter Stathis and Matthew Boyko,
Pablo Designs’ latest lighting innovation is a super slim, super flexible fixture
that uses minimal form for maximal function.
San Francisco-based Pablo Studio has long mastered the art of form and function. The studio’s latest innovation, the Superlight, certainly earned its name. The design takes focused task lighting and reduces it to its essence—near weightlessness, fluid motions and, of course, bright, glare-free LED light. We caught up with co-designer Peter Stathis to learn more.
This is one of several collaborations between you and Pablo Studio. Why does this partnership work so well?
Stathis: I’m collaborative by nature and Pablo’s background as a designer himself brings an unusual rigor and intensity to the development process. We both enjoy this back-and-forth, which leads to extraordinary results together.
As a project, Superlight began several years ago as one of my internal studio investigations. I wanted to design a task light that addressed the physical changes currently happening in our work places and provide for a wide range of new, emerging work patterns and work tools with a fixture that provided the highest degree of user flexibility and light control. That goal led to my development of a uniquely simple, but high-performance, joint mechanism integrated within the lightest and most efficient possible structure. I presented an advanced prototype of Superlight to Pablo and he was immediately on-board and oversaw bringing it to market.
It seems like the desk/task lamp is the perfect subject to showcase great design. What makes a desk lamp fun to design?
Stathis: What makes designing lighting products so satisfying for me is negotiating the symbiosis of form, function and phenomena inherent in all of the best lighting. The developments in LED technology over the past decade have revolutionized the design and manufacturing process of the entire industry. It offers me a great deal of creative potential in unifying many of my design interests; contemporary aesthetics, mechanical movement, and high-tech into an new type of lighting object that lies somewhere between a decorative accessory and consumer electronic — a tool/toy.
With the flexibility of LEDs, do you see minimalism becoming more and more the norm in design?
Stathis: Today, there are as many different styles as there are lamps. The wide vistas of open plan offices, combined with new places outside of the workplace where task lighting is now necessary, suggests for me, not necessarily a “minimalist” approach but more specifically an “aesthetically efficient” approach, exhibiting a seamless “solid-state aesthetic” more typical of other electronic devices that my lighting will most likely be seen and used in context with. For me, a product’s aesthetics go beyond style. The aesthetics include informing users to the light’s quantitative and qualitative attributes, inviting users to integrate it into their various personal interior styles, and most importantly, suggesting to users how they will derive tangible delight in using it every day.