Dutch Designer Tord Boontje Unveils New Lighting Collection with Swarovski
Many of the world’s most spectacular homes boast one of Dutch designer Tord Boontje’s sculptural Swarovski Blossom chandeliers, its crystal-laden branches twisting over a spacious formal dining table or adding a hint of romance to a master bedroom. Now the London-based visionary has unveiled his Luminous Reflections collection for the luxury crystal purveyor.
“I wanted to use relatively large crystals instead of making lights with hundreds or thousands of stones,” Boontje tells Galerie of the pieces, which feature smooth, unfaceted crystals—a first of its kind for Swarovski. “It somehow feels more contemporary.”
The collection debuted at Swarovski’s “Four Elements”–themed installation at Euroluce (April 9–14) in Milan. It includes individual hanging lights that can be grouped in infinite shapes and can be lowered to illuminate a dinner party or raised to create a calming ambience.
The crystals come in either a teardrop or a round shape and are available in two sizes, with a small bulb glowing from within to create an ethereal effect. “LEDs are so small now that we can actually put them inside crystals to look like flowers that glow,” says Boontje, who has worked with Swarovski since the early aughts. “That’s what I’ve always wanted, so I’m really happy with that.”
Over much of his partnership with the 124-year-old company, Boontje used existing Swarovski crystals in his designs. The newest creations, however, came about two years ago, when he was approached about creating his own fantasy shape. “I had this idea about making a crystal that is much softer, so if you don’t want a very sparkling chandelier,” he says. “I started to look at the organic shapes of crystal to make this really beautiful light, like light reflecting off water.”
Different thicknesses of the crystals help distort the light, while different lines help redirect it. The cordless Alexander Calder–inspired table lamp—which comes in either gold or white, with a Carrara marble base—is built to allow for movement, creating an even more otherworldly effect. “It’s a very difficult design process,” Boontje continues, “because if you draw it on a computer or make it in a clay model, you can’t see what the light is going to do. You have to make it in glass to see what happens.”