London- and Verona-based Daniel Debiasi and Federico Sandri of Something have been exploring the properties of indirect light and light diffusion for some time; Naica, a new collaboration with Ligne Roset, is a culmination of their work. The lamp is inspired by miners’ carbide lanterns, which typically used a concave reflector around a flame to cast illumination; here, however, electricity and LEDs replace acetylene gas, and living rooms become a stand-in for pitch-black subterranean hollows. The modernized, cavern-like shape of the fixture achieves the "soft and relaxing" mood the two were after—one that doesn’t shine so much as glow within the white or red cavity. "We wanted to recreate a friendly atmosphere," Debiasi tells Co.Design. "Something that would inspire a bit of calm and favor positive feelings."
They carried out extensive tests with cardboard models, but used ceramics for the final result. "It is a millennial material whose method of production, while fascinating and quite complex, has not changed much over time," Debiasi says. In addition to its inherent heritage, the small, all-but-imperceptible imperfections acquired during the production process only serve to enhance its charm. "A nice crafty and human touch," he says.
The final flourish is a simple attachment that makes for extra-easy portability around the house. "We didn’t really want to further complicate things, but we felt the need to make it look a bit more casual and less serious. So we picked up on something that was already in there: the cable. And we simply doubled its function by creating a further loop," Debiasi says. The multi-colored, fabric-covered topknot can be used to tote Naica from bedside table to sideboard to desk to shelf. And though they didn’t intend it as a mini-display, it seems like an ideal place to spotlight a tiny tableau of small, treasured knick-knacks.