Unlike other designers who might prefer starting their projects with an initial vision or a sketch and a prototype, Vancouver-based multidisciplinary artist and designer Omer Arbel prefers to dive right in and start directly from what he deems the core of the craft: experimenting with materials. “Generally, we begin (the design process) with a certain physical, mechanical or chemical property of whatever material we are working with,” Arbel explains.
“We try to invent new ways of working with these material properties such that they yield new, unpredictable forms. This process usually leads to what I call a ‘discovery’, a form that we find compelling, mysterious, and worthwhile. During this initial phase, we are like prospectors sifting for new forms. After that our process is conventional; we essentially try to rope our discovery into the real world with the conventional tools at our disposal.”
In 2005, the company debuted with 14, a collection of pendant lights with frosted glass spheres that create a soft and mesmerising glow. The intricate lighting pieces instantly became a design hit and is still one of Bocci’s bestsellers to this day.
We try to invent new ways of working with these material properties such that they yield new, unpredictable forms.— Omer Arbel