The pandemic forced us all to take a deeper look at ourselves and get creative in our creations. While that sounds easier said than done (all the banana bread and Dalgona coffee viral trends speak of our need to create!), designer Manu Bano went through the same creative process as we did and came up with an innovative design – the OBJ-01 lamp! The process of going from paper sketches to production is a daunting one, but what do you do without access to any production workshops? You simplify! The OBJ-01 is a raw sheet of metal – be it steel, stainless steel, or brass that is laser cut, assembled by hand, and needs no welding.

Don’t let OBJ-01’s simplicity fool you, the lamp does not sacrifice functionality. The circular dish adds an interactive element that acts as an adjustable lampshade, taking your light from 0 to 100 at the flick of your wrist. As Manu explains, “On this occasion, there was practically no research, the design process was an exercise of intuition. I decided to reuse the cardboard from online purchases I made during the pandemic and use it as material for mockups. I started working with this cardboard and a knife cutter, making different cuts and folds to the cardboard to transform a 2D sheet into a 3D object with different uses. My intention from the beginning was to achieve a small object that I could send flat packed all over the world, so starting the process from a flat sheet was important.” The lamp comes with an integrated custom touch dimmer, with the conductivity of the metal allowing it to work as a switch. Just tap the metal plate to turn the light on/off, and multiple taps let you adjust the brightness.

Manu’s experimentation showcases the ingenuity we can discover in times of need – reinforcing the fact that you can create with what you have as long as you are determined. The minimal, flatpack approach of the design lets you keep this on your bedside without any extra switches cluttering your tablespace with its touch conductive surface. Simple, smart, efficient, and DIY is one of the most efficient product designs I have ever seen!

Designer: MANU BAÑÓ

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