In a world that breaks down physical boundaries to the advantage of increasingly fluid and shared spaces, portable lamps play a leading role. And their practicality does not affect either the aesthetics or the light output

The pandemic has probably given the final blow to the rigid immutability of physical spaces (think only of workstations) to the advantage of an irreversible fluidity that the smartest companies have already begun to cope with. 

A flagrant indication of this trend is the proliferation of rechargeable and portable lamps, often also suitable for outdoor environments, which prestigious brands and other more niche brands entrust into the hands of designers happy to welcome this new creative challenge. 

Davide Oldani is not a designer, but with his Bontà, designed for Artemide, he is able to reflect on the interaction between light, food and conviviality. His lamp is defined by a body in opal white glass that diffuses the light, while in the upper recess there is a bowl (also in glass) designed to contain food to be shared. A taller bowl and a wider bowl can also combine or alternate at its top.

According to the chef, Bontà reveals its secrets when you bring it to the table, and you discover its magic when it is combined with food. It is not the lamp, in fact, but the light itself that welcomes the food and enhances it in the interaction that is created”.

Another highly suggestive model is Hipatia, part of the new catalog a by arturo alvarez. Suitable for indoors and outdoors, it has the classic (and timeless) appearance of a lantern, to which the stainless steel mesh lampshade gives a note of poetry. 

Always conceived from an indoor/outdoor perspective are the Nui Mini designed by Meneghello Paolelli Associati for Luceplan, which translate the aesthetics of the Nui family into a rechargeable table version, defined by two overlapping cylindrical volumes that complement and interact with each other. The Nui Mini are available in three color variants (white, greige and sand) for the hat, while the crystal base has the task of generating a refined play of reflections

Translated into Italian, its name, Chispa, means spark, as if to evoke an ideal creative combustion. Joan Gaspar designed it for Marset and its look – with that grid that protects the diffuser, surrounding it, and the base equipped with a hook to hang it where it is needed – represents the synthesis between the typical workshop light and a camping lantern . Light and inherently pop, Chispa ensures three different levels of light for any situation and mood, and is available in orange, blue, green or black. 

With its geometric volumes and the use of iron sheet, it reflects the industrial style so dear to its designer: it is Drum, conceived for Olev by Marc Sadler and conceived for both domestic environments and for restaurants and contract environments. Drum is equipped with Dim to Warm LED technology, which allows you to adjust the intensity and color of the light to obtain the most suitable atmosphere for every occasion: through a button under the head of the lamp, it is in fact possible to gradually transform the light warm white in very warm and soft. 

Finally, poetry and recovery are the key themes of Santa Marta, a small portable cap-shaped lamp designed for Pieces of Venice byMatteo Ragni. Unlike the corks, however, it is not made of cork, but using reclaimed bricole wood, that is to say the classic signaling elements that dot the Venice lagoon. To turn it on and off, simply rotate the two elements that compose it: base and hat.


Cover photo, Hipatia, a portable lamp from the catalogue by arturo alvarez.