You remember Hoberman spheres, right? Those collapsing, 3-D gizmos?
Pish posh--they've got nothing on this new lamp by Studio Dror, being unveiled this week at Art Basel. The shade itself folds completely flat--it actually looks just like a bit of chicken wire or plastic fencing. But give it a tug, and the thing unfurls into a forest of interlocking cubes.
The only way to create something this complex is rapid prototyping--and laser sintering, to be exact. The process works by sweeping a laser across a pan of powdered nylon; when the lasers hit the nylon, it fuses ("sinters"). The process repeats in layers, until the final product emerges. Thus, you can create interlocking shapes all at once--for example, a chain whose links are completely closed.
Dror created the lamp for Materialise.MGX, which specialises in producing furniture using laser sintering. The lamp shade itself is designed so that the cubes are densest in the center--thus diffusing the light simply by overlapping.
If the name Dror sounds vaguely familiar, then it's probably because the studio, founded by Dror Benshetrit, recently designed a line for Target.