Playing with light and physics – this is how OliveLab’s lamps are created, their design objects bring playfulness into everyone’s life. We talked to Anita Koritke, showroom manager at Estorio, about how she found this unique Italian brand.
OliveLab is a startup founded in Turin, born from the meeting of three young creatives. Do you remember how you got to know the brand and what was your first impression of them?
Estorio’s founder, Eszter Radnóczy, discovered the brand at a presentation organized by a chamber of commerce and was very impressed by its originality. I met the brand when the first products I ordered arrived at the office; I remember every colleague felt that childlike excitement when playing with Equilibrio magnetic lamps. Not only do these products bring out the child in everyone, but they also create playfulness, while having a contemporary, elegant design.
According to their website, they would like to introduce a new generation of OliveLab lighting to design-sensitive customers. How is this shown in their design?
There are a lot of people making lamps today and it’s hard to stand out from the crowd. It is a basic requirement to be functional, but trendy design is not necessarily enough to be successful, as there are many companies that meet this demand. OliveLab would like to surprise their customers by giving them more than they expect from a lamp, a wow experience. The essence of their design is to include reflection, magnetism or some extra physical phenomenon.
OliveLab is not inspired by a shape or a color, but rather by a feeling or a mood. How is this represented in their design objects and collections?
Giulia, the designer of OliveLab, plays a lot with light, reflection and shadows. She tries to express herself and her feelings through the lamps. It’s a kind of artistic expression, which of course has a serious engineering background, so the function is always there. The lockdown during the pandemic took its toll on her too. During this period, she played and experimented with the lighting of pieces of broken glass. The result was the D03 collection.
The Estorio is a showroom, a design apartment, a community space, a meeting point – there are many situations requiring a variety of lighting solutions. How was this achieved and what did you focus on?
Today, when it comes to designing a home, lighting is not only a basic function, but also a decorative feature. It is essential to find a balance between technical and decorative lighting. Both are necessary, but the placement of lights should not be overdone. OliveLab has several products that can perform multiple functions. We have also tried to make clever use of these products in the design: the Equilibrio floor lamp which can also be used as a reading lamp, or the Stoccolma reading light which can also be used as a wall light illuminating the golden threads of the textile tapestry. The latter, for example, helped us combine two functions in one product: a reading lamp which can be used in the living room next to the armchair but can also function as a product lighting lamp in the showroom. In addition, the brightness of most of their lamps can be adjusted so we can easily change the lamps according to the time of day or to the events taking place in the Estorio.
Which product did you choose for the first concept of Estorio from the brand and why?
We chose Equilibrio wall light, Equilibrio floor lamp and Stoccolma lamp for Estorio. The gold and glass colors were a great match to the elegant design inspired by the proximity of the Opera House, and we are happy to make the place more exciting with the playfulness of the OliveLab lamps, which of course is not easy to notice at first, but all faces light up when we reveal the secrets of the lamps.
Who would you recommend OliveLab products to? What are the needs of their customers?
I’d recommend them to playful adults, physics lovers, those looking for elegant, sophisticated design, those who are open to new ideas and who want to give a little “wow experience” to guests when they switch on the lamp and reveal its little tricks.