Apart from technical considerations, a lighting designer needs to grasp the tangible form that light takes as well as the intangible; the latter being the effect of illumination. Tan Wei Ming of Kuala Lumpur-based Aureole Design has mastered both, with her elegant lamps showcasing an understanding of materiality and the subtlety light can bring to a space.
Established by Tan in 2013, the Malaysian studio Aureole Design takes its poetic name from the circle of light surrounding a head—a term often used to describe the halo in artworks. Trained in typography and having practiced graphic design, she decided to explore her love of lighting and furniture design after being part of a design collective in 2007, which produced custom furniture, lighting, and interior pieces for projects.
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Since then, Tan’s small but considered product range has seen her collaborating with traditional craftsmen and exploring heritage techniques and materials; her collections are offered online by the art and design platform The Artling.
Highlights include her Dǒugǒng collection, which adapts the interlocking wooden brackets of traditional Chinese architecture to create a design motif repeated for her lighting pieces, standing mirrors, and a side table and bench. The Geometry line features delicate “origami folds” of terrazzo and her Line series is a minimalist interpretation of Mid-Autumn Festival lanterns. Poetic yet rigorous, Tan’s modern take on tradition has created compelling products celebrating craftsmanship with the refinement of fine art.
Here, she tells us more about her design philosophy and plans ahead for the studio.