Designer portrait Simon Busse
Anna Moldenhauer: How did the collaboration with Ambright come about?
Simon Busse: I’ve known Volker Scheuba (Head of Marketing at Ambright GmbH) for some time. Thanks to him I was able to visit the company’s production plant and we started our creative collaboration. In the space of just one year we were able to develop a luminaire and get it ready for launch. Up to this point, Ambright had exclusively produced individually manufactured luminaires for B2B customers with its patented printed-light approach. What we present now is the first series luminaire, "PARIS".
What made Ambright decide on this new option?
Simon Busse: The customized projects with “SparkShapes” involve a lot of planning and require close consultation between the architects and light planners, on the one hand, and Ambright’s own design team, on the other. Now, with the “Master Series” Ambright is set like to branch out into developing luminaire archetypes that can be produced in series and can be scaled up, enabling a swift response to different interior architecture requirements.
On your website you write that you are fascinated by aesthetic precision, a sense for technology and a passion for experimenting. To what extent did you see these aspects echoed in your collaboration with Ambright?
Simon Busse: What fascinated me about Ambright was the very different approach to the production of a luminaire, that they think "out of the box". I find the patented "light printing", the precision and that all processes can be done with a single machine fascinating. Other manufacturers have 20 different production processes and Ambright manages to produce a luminaire with only one machine. In addition, founder and CEO Dr.-Ing. Florian Ilchmann and his team have a great deal of expertise in lighting technology - this was also the basis for the development of the SparkShapes and the more than 10-year collaboration with Siemens Healtineers, which enabled Ambright to start in a market with the highest quality requirements, medical technology. Engineering know-how meets design, a wonderful combination.
The “PARIS” pendant luminaire consists of two illuminated layers that run perpendicular to each other and can be controlled individually. Where did the inspiration for that come from?
Simon Busse: The trademark of SparkShapes is the homogeneous illuminated edge and the idea was to have it appear like a line within the context of a three- dimensional structure. By alternating horizontal and vertical elements this illuminated edge now contributes to the sculptural appearance of “PARIS”. The surfaces are slender and, thanks to the special surface coating, are also used as a gentle reflector. In addition, the shape should look a little archetypal - despite the abstract surfaces, you can see in it a traditional pendant lamp.
Was there an idea you were able to realize for the first time thanks to the SparkShapes technology?
Simon Busse: The transfer from the sketch to the product is perfect with “PARIS”. With SparkShapes the lines of a drawing can be realized without needing to add an additional volume.
Are you saying that with SparkShapes it’s possible to bring a minimalist sketch to life on a 1:1 basis?
Simon Busse: Precisely, because the subsequent production is not a problem as the material is defined from the start. For the first time, light becomes, so to speak, a material with which to design.
“PARIS” was showcased at this year’s Salone del Mobile in Milan in cooperation with furniture brand Yomei. What feedback did you get from visitors for the design?
Simon Busse: Although we were only a small cog in this big wheel, I was able to talk to a lot of visitors and the positive response even before the market launch surprised us all. With “PARIS” we were able to challenge the viewing habits of visitors as its structure is more minimalist and delicate than one is otherwise accustomed to for such structures.
What are the next joint steps with Ambright?
Simon Busse: Gratifyingly, we have already received inquiries from retail partners who would like to include the luminaire in their range even before the official sales launch. As it takes up so little space, in terms of logistics it only requires very flat packaging. And with regard to the technology of Ambright we are currently pushing the borders of what is now possible which is very exciting.