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Freshly baked idea: Black Gold by Ingo Schuppler.

The expression “black gold” has traditionally been associated with mineral oil. It is the burning of oil for energy that produces carbon, that has become public enemy no 1 with environmentalists. So it is with sweet irony that Ingo Schuppler, who works out of Leipzig, Germany, designed this lamp using carbon to evoke that heavily weighted expression.

Whilst the cultural rehabilitation of a blackened phrase may not have been his primary objective, the designer has shown a flash of creative genius that should inspire us all to find new ways to do familiar things with lower environmental impacts.

Using crushed charcoal from an FSC verified source, the powder is mixed with water and flour that acts as the binding agent. The mixture is poured into a mould and baked at a low temperature for a few hours.

When the shade is cooked the mixture becomes solid and non-marking. The copper sheet that formed the mould interior is retained, strongly bonded to the carbon cake. The lamp is completed with the addition of the electrical gubbings that includes a low-energy LED lamp.

The best bit comes at the end of the lamp's life where it is simply dissolved in water!

How elegant!

 

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