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Beyond the Surface: Wireline

“Every author has an obsession. Ours is Light.”
“Every author has an obsession. Ours is Light.”

“Every author has an obsession. Ours is Light.” In 2009, Italians Andrea Trimarchi and Simone Farresin became Formafantasma, a design team who engineers extraordinary environments through a transformative play of light and space. 

Critical to their philosophy, visual language and researched outcomes is their training in both Italy and Holland, the later of which drives their desire for diversified light. Located in Eindhoven, the studio uses light to share stories and expand technologies in with poetic and insightful expression. 

Formafantasma’s first collaboration with Flos began in 2017, with the highly successful WireRing, a nod to Achille Castiglioni’s Parentesi. The continuation of WireRing delivers an unremitting dance of industry and artful aesthetic in the now available Wireline. 

Both WireRing and Wireline reduce design to its essentials, with a power cable presenting as a central design feature, fashioning both the aesthetically interesting shape and the performative personification of the piece. 

In Wireline, the cable is flattened to resemble a rubber belt. Hanging from the ceiling, it exhibits a juxtaposition of materials and shapes, with modest, industrial, flattened rubber laying in contrast with the more sophisticated, and seemingly more noble, extruded tube of glass that acts as the design’s enchanting light source. 

The effect of light floating in air is achieved by the manipulation of an unseen electrical source – the light remains suspended within the rubber band as if by magic. Wireline can stand alone as a magnificent creature that celebrates poetry and simplicity, or can manifest as a wonderous, breathtaking visual symphony when used repeatedly. When disassembled, the light becomes a tribute to reduction, easily portable and surprisingly minimal. 

Here, practicality unites with the unpredictable as Formafantasma recognizes the “soft power” of design – how light can imprint a formidable presence while not necessarily making an appearance as a physical object. With Wireline, functional light marries emotional light, as Trimarchi and Farresin notes the importance of light as it shapes one’s quality of life, their motivation for working so tirelessly on these pieces. 

With delicate grace and technical innovation, Wireline is available in pink and forest green rubber and features an internal diffuser in opal PC with injection molded PC rosette in the same finishes as the cable. The electronics allow for different dimerization systems – push, 1-10, potentiometer and DALI. 

If these systems are unavailable, a luminous flux can be set with a push system in the canopy, bringing an unrivaled recital of technical function with elevated, expressive visual sensation. 

Luminaire looks forward to awakening the public’s imagination with a profound performance of light as it stirs our emotions and our everyday lives. Light is, as Trimarchi and Farresin illuminates, a “territory for pioneers and the most exciting exploratory field for design.” 

Available for the first time in the United States starting June 29th, Wireline personifies the design ethos of Formafantasma, where practicality, technology, and social responsibility collide with art after well-considered, extensive research.

August 2021

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