A perfect project in times of social distancing. Last March, in the middle of the Covid crisis, Tobias Grau decided to start an experiment. What would have happened if artists, photographers, directors and illustrators - all equally confined to the house - had started interpreting his lamps from the home collection in total freedom?
Since the beginning of the Artists for Tobias Grau project, the artists involved have shared photographs, videos, illustrations, installation shots and 3D images, investigating the emotional experience that light can offer. Not a catalog on individual products, therefore, but an exploration of light and the sensations it generates.
The result is visible on Instagram (@tobiasgrau_lighting and #ArtistsforTobiasGrau) and the project is developing into new dimensions in the coming months, increasingly exploring the potential of light.
The English photographer Otto Masters took the Parrot portable lamp for a walk in London, in the Hackney Marshes neighborhood, one of those that hosted the 2012 Olympics.
“Exploring the moment between day and night, shooting at sunset, with the lights coming to life in the houses, I wanted to investigate the idea of freedom by choosing the Hackney Marshes district of London as a location, on the slopes of the urban landscape”.
Torso, the New York-based duo of photographers made a series of portraits with the Parrot portable lamp. The couple maximized their mobility and gestural expression to achieve a sense of animism, in a relationship in which the lamp actively participates.
“In general, we imagined a woman as a sexual object, in the act of marrying Parrot. The ability of the lamp to operate in any space gives it a sort of anthropomorphic quality and we wanted the images to be somewhat intimate, so Parrot was like a partner or relative who appears with you in a family album at different times of the your life”.
London photographer Darryl Daley has created a series of portraits and self-portraits working with the light of Tobias Grau's lamps. Daley shot in complete darkness using only Parrot to sculpt the lights and shadows, and John to create the aura effect.
“Continuing my recent artistic journey my aim was to illuminate the black body in all its flaws and beauty”.
In her series, Sarah Blais used various imaging techniques to move the lamps and represent the passage of time through light.
“Depending on the perspective, the forms take on different qualities. The circles become ellipses and overlapping shapes recall the motifs of nature. I often wonder if the aesthetics of that exact moment come from memories or if it is instead part of a universal DNA. I was interested in the sense of space that light can create. I took this idea to the edge of the image and started playing with the shapes and movement of light over time”.
The French photographer Bastien Gomez he portrayed Salt&Pepper in front of a spectacular mountain backdrop.
“The Salt & Pepper portable lamp blurs the line between inside and outside. It is visible both in the foreground and in the second level of my image. Its shape is abstract enough to be recognizable. And it invites you to explore the horizon”.