Though designers make pieces that are commodities of everyday use, a lot of the functional pieces created by designers can still be considered ‘art’ in their own way.
German designer Miriam Aust of Aust Amelung created the “Vase & Leuchte” (2011) table lamp that functions as both a lamp and vase. The act of combining the element of light and plants into the design is like an experiment, giving the piece a laboratory aesthetic. The plants are placed in the main bowl structure with water, and the light bulb is protected by a glass structure, similar to a laboratory glass beaker, in the middle of the bowl. This allows for the light to travel through the plants, highlighting unique elements such as the vascular tissue of leaves or reflecting root patterns onto walls. You can order your very own “Vase & Leuchte” at the dua shop.
Japanese product designer Yuma Kuno has created a slightly similar piece, involving light bulbs as vases. In 2007, Japan’s Ministry of Environment asked companies to stop using inefficient incandescent light bulbs. Kuno saw a chance to use these obsolete objects and change their function to something useful; the bulbs can hold small flowers, and even the filament is used as a stem holder.
Whether highlighting the aesthetic biology of a plant or merely being used as a simple holder for one, both the works of Miriam Aust and Yuma Kuno are great design ideas!