Mygdal plant lamp 02.06.16

plant ecosystem

Nui Studio’s design is both an elegant LED lamp of handblown glass and a hermetically sealed ecosystem where plants can thrive without water or sunlight

We’ve been tripping over plant ecosystems at design fairs for a while now, most of which adopt a minimalist aesthetic in their marriages of tech and topiary. Sadly, an immaculate white pot containing a fiercely trimmed herb isn’t particularly practical or welcoming, unless constant cleaning of pristine interiors is your bag.

But the Mygdal plant lamp from Nui – a young studio based in Halle, east Germany – changes all that. The studio’s founders, Emilia Lucht and Arne Sebrantke, make the bold claim that its hermetically sealed environment is ‘a completely self-sustaining ecosystem where the plants can grow without the need for sunlight or watering’. The science doesn’t stop there – Mygdal comes as a pendant or floor lamp in two sizes, and the latter boasts an invisible conductive glass coating that connects the power source to the LED light.

Yet it’s Lucht and Sebrantke’s shared background in carpentry and industrial design, rather than the impressive technology, that kicks Mygdal into the big league. The rippled, mouth-blown glass is reminiscent of an old apothecary jar, taking advantage of the soft LED light and the plant’s foliage to diffuse glare. If desired, the spun aluminium holder and lid can be removed – including the hefty cork bung of the floor lamp – allowing you to snip a leaf or two from your beloved coriander. Functionalism doesn’t always need to come in white.

 

Words

John Jervis

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