Mobileshadows by French Design House Smarin

Everyone wants to be enchanted. At their peril (and ours), some designers forget that—not so with Frenchwoman extraordinaire Stéphanie Marin. Her Nice-based company Smarin “offers a family of objects in which each element is used independently or together: soft forms and simple lines that match each other and overlap to infinity.” With a focus on the environment (products are 100% French-made in the Nice workshop) and a penchant for the fantastical, Smarin aims for “euphoria and lightness”—the very qualities most embodied by Mobileshadows.

Mobileshadows. Designed by Stéphanie Marin of Smarin.

A system of modular mobiles, Mobileshadows can be arranged in different ways using the seven basic cloud-shaped pieces: Nimbostra, Tuba, Cirrus, Flocco, Cumulonimbus, Halo, and Lacuno. Piece together whichever you like to attain whatever size you desire or (heaven forbid!) need. Indoors or out, Mobileshadows casts a luminous glow as it filters light through its translucent voile—the extremely sheer 100% silk or the more substantial 100% linen. It appears like a giant version of our childhood mobiles, so much more entrancing in this grandiose state—its dynamically altered scale is arresting (as captivating as Denver’s The Yearling by Donald Lipski, a sculpture of a big horse being dwarfed by the red slatted chair on which it stands).




Smarin suggests these uses for Mobileshadows: “to be freely suspended in a window frame, or to separate spaces.” Both of those ideas seem particularly practical given the otherworldly implications of the object—descending the clouds from the sky, miniaturizing the crystalline masses, transforming the nebulous into the solid. And this says nothing of the shadow-casting that Mobileshadows is partly named for. The organic forms manipulate light, constructing rabbits and bears and maps of Constantinople (whatever you see in the shadows, just like in the clouds). Smarin transforms the quotidian into the wondrous with her phantasmagorical Mobileshadows.

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