Molo’s Cappello Light Re-visits A Classic

Leave it to manufacturer Molo to send me back to the dictionary. Last time, my search for the English translation of the Italian word “Arco,” informed me as to the true meaning of their Love Letter Lights; this go around, the word is “cappello” and the derivative product—Molo’s Cappello series of whimsical and personable lamps—is a similar homage with a slightly different formal constraint. Just as with Love Letter, Cappello takes its inspiration and its impetus from a forgotten fragment of design history—the by-product of the famed Arco Lamp that brothers Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni created way back in 1962. A long, swooping, and gracefully-arched Modern affair that stood on a pedestal of perfectly rectangular Carrera marble, the lamps’ manufacture resulted in a curious by-product that’s now a bit of A&D history and trivia.

Cappello. Designed by Molo.

Artifact of the Past Becomes Keystone for the Future

Just as with Love Letter, Cappello’s base consists of the remnant chunk of marble that resulted from the hole in Arco’s base (exactly the size of a broomstick handle in order to make the piece more portable). Alas, the customized Love Letter has sold out, but, thankfully, Cappello has arrived to take its place. The latter of course bears some superficial resemblance to LL, but the similarity really ends at the topside of the mini marble pedestal. Cappello translates as “Cap,” thus giving a clue to the different conceptual approaches of the two pieces. In the case of Cappello the name references the semi-globe shaped shade perched on-high, an unusual diffuser that is, surprisingly, made out of paper.

Molo's Cappello Light Re-visits A Classic
Molo's Cappello Light Re-visits A Classic
Molo's Cappello Light Re-visits A Classic

Cappello is high on the resource-efficiency quotient. Not only does the piece’s lower half exhibit an excellent re-incorporation of extant materials, but the entire piece is constructed of a mere four elements. Like Love Letter, Cappello’s “shaft” is made from pliable wire; its electrical source is artfully woven around the latter to find purchase amid the bank of energy-efficient LEDs underneath the paper shade. The aesthetic is a deft blend of informal jouissance and Modern self-conscious referentiality that looks like an amiable albino mushroom, and I mean that in the best possible way. Just like Love Letter, Cappello takes the classic Arco and builds on its iconic reputation not through mere imitation, but rather via the inestimably more difficult route of clever re-appropriation and humorous homage.

Via MocoLoco.

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