Design Runa Klock & Hallgeir Homstvedt
”A sculptural sound absorbing lighting”
With Holly, Norwegian designers Hallgeir Homstvedt and Runa Klock have continued their creative exploration of soundscapes and acoustic products. Holly is sculptural and enigmatic. It plays with the contrasts between light, reflection and shadows. Holly is neither a lamp with acoustic properties nor an acoustic furniture piece equipped with lighting. None of its practical features is paramount. Holly is an aesthetic and functional entity in which acoustics and lighting are equally important. Holly strikes a perfect aesthetic balance between the two functions.
With Holly, Homstvedt and Klock have challenged preconceptions of how a lamp with acoustic properties should look. “An awful lot of acoustic lamps are easy to identify as acoustic products. They’re very much alike. It’s reminiscent of the early hybrid electric vehicles. You could tell right away that they were HEVs simply by their outer shape. It’s the same with acoustic lighting. Runa and I approached the concept from a different angle. Our ambition was to create a beautiful object that also happens to be really functional,” says Homstvedt.
Abstracta shares the two designers’ ambition. As people, we experience the spaces in which we find ourselves with all our senses. The design of our surroundings must therefore take into account how they look, how they sound, and how they feel. We believe that people’s expectations of the objects they use to furnish their workplaces, restaurants, homes and other environments will continue to grow — particularly now, in this period of change, as we reassess the meaning of workplace and home. The office has gone beyond being simply a place to work. It has also become a centre of community and inspiration, as well as a tool for building corporate culture. Functionality and efficiency count, but other values such as employee health and well-being do, as well. As the soundscape of a space has become more important, so has its aesthetic design. Workplaces have become more personal and inspiring. It used to be the case that homes and workplaces looked very different. Today, the differences are less obvious. Improving a soundscape is easy. Doing it with style is the hard part.
Holly functions as a light sculpture consisting of large, luminous orbs made of milk glass and non-luminous, acoustic orbs filled with textile remnants and reclaimed polyester encased in a 3D-knitted fabric — an innovation introduced with Holly that greatly reduces textile waste. Holly awakens thoughts and associations that might soar to the Moon or the Sun. But the designers’ source of inspiration was rather more down to earth. “We were thinking of holly and its beautiful berry clusters. Our working name for it was Holly, as well,” explains Klock.
Holly is available in two versions: a vertical one suitable for lobbies and other high-ceiling spaces, as well as in corners for increased acoustic effect; and a horizontal one that can be suspended over large tables in, for example, restaurants, bars, and workspaces. It is also possible to combine standard versions with bespoke ones entirely without lighting for environments particularly exposed to noise.