Reimagining the source of light as a sculpture
Gweilo is a new collection of architectural lights designed by PARTISANS. Inspired by the idea that light itself could be harnessed and manipulated to create a physical sculpture, PARTISANS developed a design that alters light at its source.
How Gweilo is made
Each Gweilo light is handmade using thermoforming, a technique that allows etched optical grade acrylic sheets to be custom-shaped while they are still in their hot plastic state. The sheets are heated to just under 400 degrees Celcius, at which point they become molten and pliable. They are immediately removed from the heat source and sculpted to produce a variety of distinct folds and curves.
Above & below: Alex Josephson of PARTISANS works with Gweilo in its molten state
When the metal extrusion containing an embedded LED strip is affixed to the cooled sheet’s edge, light is diffused across the etchings, amplifying the luminescent output. The result is an infinite set of silhouettes and sizes that emulate the vital movement of light.
“We have been trying to create light that is light itself … this is about getting as close to the source as possible. Can light be a moving object? Why can’t light pool, drip, or drape?”
— Alex Josephson, co-founder of PARTISANS
Above: cleaning Gweilo with pressurized air
Gweilo in use
As spectral sculptures that fold and bend like light rays themselves, Gweilo reimagines the very way in which a light source emits luminescence to architectural effect.
As a family of floor and table luminaires, Gweilo is scalable, offering significant potential for commercial and hospitality projects in addition to its obvious residential applications.
Gweilo functions as accents, dividers, or centrepieces, gracefully delineating space to create an ethereal atmosphere.
As a prototype, Gweilo garnered national accolades, winning a LAMP Award in 2015 and the AZ Award for Best Lighting Installation in 2016. In 2018 the prototype became a full-fledge production product, fabricated in Spain by Parachilna. During the same year, the Gweilo collection won a Wallpaper* Design Award.