As the cofounder of design studio EWE and the Associate of renowned design firm Esrawe Studio in Mexico City, Manu Bañó aims to push the boundary of homeware designs through personal creations and experimentations.
With his first object—OBJ-01 Lamp—Manu investigates the minimality in material usage, assemblage, and aesthetic. Using geometrical forms, the designer applies simple rectangles and circles to be cut from a sheet of raw metal—be it steel, stainless steel, or brass. Two-dimensional shapes are distributed smartly on a single plate and brought together into a three-dimensional object with ease.
This lighting fixture, with a facade of a contemporary sculpture, consists of four elements: an L-shaped joinery acting as the standee, an rotating circular surface to adjust the direction of light, a rectangular plane dictating the formation of OBJ-01, and a cylindrical LED spotlight modestly resides behind said plane. Every figure serves a sole function and their respective function informs the outcome of appearance.
The construction of the design is as direct as its image. Where the rectangular plane rests on the L-shaped joinery, their intersection rigidly gives stance to the object’s entirety. The circular plane is joined with two thick metallic dowels, installed by hand with a rubber hammer. This subtle detail creates a floating illusion where the two planes meet, while exempting the light of any extraneous technical input.
In the language of aesthetic, OBJ-01 holds an abstract altar-like posture. When the warm LED light shines onto the metal plane, the emitting glow gives a soft hue to its surroundings. Yet the focus still concentrates at the central piece, fixing the gazes of spectators; then the design transforms into an iconic statue to be observed.
Manu Bañó only aims for the design to be a “part of an open collection of simple objects based on the purity of raw materials, industrial processes and simple gestures that cause a speciﬁc function.” However, the end result is a conceptual reading that goes beyond technicality and operational pursuits.