Starck + Flos = K-Ray Lamp

I’m beginning to think that Philippe Starck has been cloned. Everywhere I look, there’s Starck, sometimes alone, sometimes with friends. Last April the ubiquitous Starck was to be found at Euroluce 2009, the lighting show that occurs in conjunction with Salone Internazionale del Mobile. At Euroluce, Starck paired with designer Eugeni Quitllet and manufacturer Flos to produce K-Ray, a unique lamp—unique even in its pronunciation, which should sound like the Spanish Damn! (Caray)! It’s a good little trio here, not only because of the designers themselves, but also due to the daring house of modern lighting known as Flos.

K-Ray. Designed by Philippe Starck for Flos.

Illuminating wonders since 1962, Starck’s iconic and provocative lighting “changed the concept of illumination itself.” Much of their success is due to the company’s “ability to spot emerging talent.” Obviously, they also spot the gifted who are already established—hence, Starck. One fabulous thing about the Flos website is that they provide engaging, narrative biographies of the designers in their employ. So we learn that Monsieur Starck “recalls spending his childhood underneath his father’s drawing boards, hours spent sawing, cutting, gluing, sanding, dismantling bikes, motor cycles and other objects.” I’m certain that the poor Papa also found Starck to be everywhere at once—especially since the child was essentially wrecking things and generally causing havoc (what Flos calls “remaking the world around him” in a brilliant euphemism for destruction). Luckily, Starck channeled that energy into K-Ray, the light that looks like a stoplight housed in a trumpet.



Available in glossy black or white, K-Ray measures 113 mm wide by 419 mm high by 174 mm deep—substantial for a desk lamp (if that’s even its category). The rectangular beacon should make you see your world in a new light, which is, after all, what Starck is known for: “He is tireless in changing the realities of our daily life, sublimating our roots and the deepest wellsprings of our being into his changes.” 

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