Discover the concept of Fedora lamp in the dialogue between the designer, Dima Loginoff and Axo Light Art Director, Lorenzo Truant
Presented for the first time on the occasion of the Euroluce fair in Milan, Fedora is already one of the most successful Axo Light products. Available in suspension and ceiling versions, Fedora proposes the matryoshka shape in a new light. The concept behind Fedora and other peculiar information can be discovered in a dialogue between Lorenzo Truant, Axo Light art director, and Dima Loginoff, the Russian designer who created Fedora.
Lorenzo Truant: What does Fedora mean to you? And what about its formal reference to the traditional Russian doll we know as matryoshka and which the whole world typically associates to your country?
Dima Loginoff: It is traditional Russian, but it has the most minimal shape comparing with other Russian icons. Besides, despite what many people think about Matryoshka – it’s not too old. In fact it is as old as cinematograph, and the idea of many layers when you may find one doll inside another came from Japan. But don’t worry! Many Russians think that Matryoshka is 500 or 1000 years old. That’s funny! I have several dolls at home. One of them is simple and painted just in one bold colour – gold. Despite people call me “the less Russian designer in Russia”, I love this shape and it seems it’s in my DNA. The name Fedora is an old and forgotten Russian name, its short name is Dora. I just love it! That was the name of my great-grandmother.
Lorenzo Truant: How close are you to tradition and to shapes from the past? Apart from the Russian tradition, I mean in general history of shapes which often somehow influence artists and designers.
Dima Loginoff: Quite close. I am a big fan of minimalism, but at the same time I always have this contrast in my mind about historical influence, meaning not only Russian historical styles. I am playing a wonderful game in design where I try to combine modern and traditional.
Lorenzo Truant: I think the objects you design have a hidden connection with the past which is transfigured by your natural awareness of your contemporary creative talent. This hidden element is literally melted in your works which are therefore often familiar and appealing, brand-new but with a secret connection with the history of shapes; it looks as if the result arose from an alchemy between contemporary art and a “dream archaeology”, a personal essence of history which every time turns into a new idea. How do you actually work on a project, I mean what are you used to doing when you work around an idea, a product and in particular a lamp?
Dima Loginoff: It is not strange that in this project I connected modern and old. It usually depends on the shape. You know I have designed many ultramodern things, but sometimes I just feel that classical shapes will be great to redesign and turn the product into modern. Sometimes I just feel that it works.
Lorenzo Truant: In Europe the Russian as well as the Eastern European taste is often identified with a very sophisticated, demanding, historic, classy and fancy style meant to enhance a social status rather than to meet an actual contemporary need. Do you agree with this view? How much has the predominant local and national culture influenced you? How much has the globalization of values “shaped” your job as a designer? What do you think about the “glocal” approach in the design industry? When you design a product, do you feel you have to follow a main taste to go along with a market or do you freely follow your instinct as well as your style?
Dima Loginoff: Many people ask me about «Russian taste». But I truly can’t help them. I just don’t know what’s going on in that field. Maybe that’s why I haven’t designed for any Russian company yet. Of course, there are differences with the rest of world. New money, new power, new ways of expression. Rich people often looks strange, but what I noticed – they learned fast and they are changing. You can easily find absolutely modern, simple and luxurious residences as well as modern townhouses in suburbs for the middle class. And what I saw it is not too «traditional» luckily. As for me I start my day with a cup of espresso and design blogs. I check a lot of design content, but not because I have to. That’s my passion, that’s part of my life. Local market doesn’t influence me at all, the world of design does.
Lorenzo Truant: Now, more than ever, light is a metaphysical element for the Russian culture and the icon paintings revealed by Pavel Florenskij are the most significant pieces of evidence. In this cultural perspective, is there more reflection when it comes to designing light? Are you particularly keen on designing lamps or do you indifferently design a chair, a table rather than a lamp?
Dima Loginoff: Designing lamps is one of the aspects I love more about my work. This idea includes so many aspects…: shape and esthetics, the light, its rays, the shadows. And people always forget about the darkness. In one turn you light up the darkness. Which other piece of design can do that? But of course I design not only lighting items. For example now I am working on an innovative hi-end acoustic system.
Lorenzo Truant: Let’s play a game: I’ll list several pairs of words, not necessarily opposites or perfectly linked between each other and if you want to you can make a brief comment, tell me an anecdote or what you think about them. This game is meant to understand the value of words and what they can trigger inside a person according to the culture he or she comes from and what he or she has experienced:
not always on the first place for me.
could be mixed to obtain a good design.
In our lives it’s a line. But during meditation ( as designing ) you can play with that.
Brothers. And design is the youngest one.
The Energy. And the lamp is a tool to play with that. (I know that seems too spiritual)
Two ways of knowing the Energy.
Two types of conscience. Individual and Collective.
Same as PHYSICS/METAPHYSICS absolutely.
The most inconstant concept
Fedora, contemporary forms of the past
The collection of Fedora lamps, made of aluminium and glass, consists of five different types of suspended models – with one light, a cluster of three, six and twelve lights and seven lights in a line – and a recessed spotlight. Namely, the suspended models reveal the touch of the designer, the rising star of Russian design Dima Loginoff, who took and reinterpreted a shape universally regarded as associated with Russian tradition.
The combination of two materials such as aluminium and glass makes the Fedora lamp a particularly decorative item suitable to illuminate and decorate different areas, both in residential spaces (living, dining, halls) and in the contract sector (reception desks and lounges in hotels and public venues). In the suspended version the diffuser consists of an aluminium part, available in metallic bronze, rose gold or chrome, and another part made of clear glass. The built-in spotlight is entirely made of clear glass. The light source is LED-based.
Information & images by courtesy of Axo Light
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