Design has always captivated me for its close relationship with artistic craftsmanship. It is the story of the craft and the idea that stands behind it that sparks my imagination whenever I find a masterfully designed piece.
Even though we live in the era of mass consumption, in the past few years I have seen an increasing demand for authenticity, a spiritual return to our roots and the nature. We love bio products and the local cuisine, hand-crafted gifts and the cosy cafés with a personal feel. But mostly – in our busy, technology-driven lives – we seek to surround ourselves with a little bit of peace in our most quiet and reflective moments.
It is precisely one of those moments that spontaneously came to my mind when I first discovered Finom lights, a set of beautifully crafted lamps made entirely from birch wood. This brilliant reinvention of a traditional Finnish material, combined with a minimalistic Nordic design gives the lamps a unique way of bringing light indoors.
Somehow you feel enchanted next to it. The light is soft and mellow and it allows your eyes to linger on the wood surface as long as you feel like. The birch then slowly reveals its inner, unique patterns. Because there are no two pieces of wood alike – each lamp is a one-of-a-kind.
When you cut a tree and transform it into an indoor light, it is as though the tree continues its life in your living room.
I loved these words of Esa Vesmanen, the designer of Finom lights and founder of Pure Design Oy, who is as passionate about his craft as any true artist. His inspiration came from his longstanding interest and study of indoor lights, as well as from the material itself – birch – for its organic dimension and structure.
Finom lights are not only about what you see, but also about how you feel. To me – this is an even more important dimension of the lamps. Aside from the functional and practical use, they bring a sense of peace and mindfulness in the space they inhabit.
It is interesting to reflect on how the light feels rather than how it looks, particularly because the lamps’ assembling process is done with the help of visually impaired workers from Iiris Finland. I was surprised and touched to hear about this behind-the-scenes aspect. I find this to be an important CSR/Corporate Social Responsibility dimension of the Finom craft, one that makes us appreciate not only the design, but also the deeply human element in the creating process.
Finom lights are designed, produced and assembled in Finland. The return to the nature, so evident in these pieces, is a recurrent cultural theme in Finland, depicted throughout time in almost every form of artistic expression including painting, sculpture, ceramics, design and literature.
Still, even if they are 100% Finnish, their name – hinting to their mother land – is borrowed from the Hungarian finom, a word with multiple interpretations: tasteful, elegant, ethereal, fragile, fine, delicious, delicate, tasty, stylish.
I found all of the above to be true and well-fitting descriptions of the lamps.
Finom lights have been officially launched on the market just recently, with the first retail partnership in Finland with Formverk, an established Finnish high-end design retailer. The lamps can be purchased at Formverk Living on Annankatu 23 in Helsinki or from the Formverk online store.
For more information about the lights and their design check the Finom lights website.