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2013 Lighting Collections for Saint-Louis
In 2013, Saint-Louis debuted 3 new collections of lighting designed by 3 women designers - Paola Navone, Kiki van Eijk, and Ionna Vautrin. Each designer visited the Saint-Louis factory in France and had a chance to explore their archives (which date back to the company's origin in 1586). Each woman found different inspiration for her own creation and set out to design a range of lights - chandeliers, pendant lights, floor lamps and table lamps - that incorporate a threefold challenge: technique, aesthetics and energy. It was in the cutting workshop at Saint-Louis, where expert crystal workers perfect their creations, that Ionna's eye was irresistibly drawn to a dozen chandelier arms sprouting from a cardboard box, as if they had somehow been planted there, randomly without care or deliberation, but had nevertheless started to grow. From this inspiration grew "Saule" ("Willow"), named in honor of its crown-like shape of crystal branches. Passionate about color, Paola Navone was enamored with Saint-Louis' emblematic cut glasses, made in a rainbow of hues. She set out to understand the entire range of techniques: pearl cutting, diamond points, bandeau, bevel cutting, and crystal overlay. To highlight the timeless wisdom of the owls in her "Hulotte" ("Owl") collection, she incorporates polka dots, crosses, and colors in her pieces. Kiki van Eijk was inspired by the supply of moulds in the Saint-Louis warehouse. 2,000 cast-iron moulds line the shelves of a dark room, while four thousand others nestle in crates and cellars. She quickly saw beyond their outward appearance and decided to make a crystal lamp in the shape of a mould, representative of resuscitation and rebirth.