Earlier this week we profiled a design project that started in the natural world and ended up somewhere fantastic. We have another one of those for this post: “Maggiolina,” table lamps by Italian designer Alessandro Zambelli, look like beetles that have undergone a metamorphosis. Zambelli made the set for .exnovo, a company that specializes in 3D printing.
The company calls Zambelli’s lamps “curious subjects.” The transformation involving beetles has literary precedent in Franz Kafka’s story The Metamorphosis, only now the put-upon Gregor Samsa has progressed in his mutation and is now a table lamp. The bulb-like diffuser takes on the look of a beetle’s elytra, the hardened forewing on a beetle’s body. The armor has been perforated and emits light in a soft, gentle glow.
We guess the literary metaphor starts to break down when you consider that you might actually want one of these lamps in your home. Samsa had a very different experience when he changed. Maybe he should have teamed up with a product designer. Things could have gone better for him.
The lamps take their light from an LED bulb. They are made from ceramic and laser sintered polyamide.
Zambelli lives and works in Mantua, Italy. He studied industrial design at the Cova School of Design in Milan and he began his career with the bathroom designer Agape in 2000. Three years later he founded his own design studio.
In 2006 he worked on the Estetico Quotidiano project, marking the start of his co-operation with the design house of Seletti. Zambelli’s Palace Collection and School Joke Chair followed (for the same client) and won a European Consumers Choice award (2011) and an NYIGF award (2012). During this period, he forged working relations with many other firms in the sector: furniture designer Caimi Brevetti, home accessory and clock manufacturer Diamantini & Domeniconi, Disaronno, Italian new technology designer .exnovo, leather goods designer Rudi Rabitti, home furnishing designer Skitsch and crystal ware manufacturer Swarovski.
Zambelli is a co-founder of Padiglione Italia, a designers’ collective which seeks to present the specifics of the Italian design scene. Zambelli has exhibited at the Beijing Design Week, Invito a Tavola (New York), the Tokyo Tableware Festival and F.O.O.D. (Mint Museum, Charlotte, NC) and other international design fairs.
What do you think of Zambelli’s contemporary ceramics? Let us know in the comments.