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THE URBANISM ISSUE

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Celebrated SITE founder James Wines reinvents another icon with the Foscarini Lightbulb Series.

Since he founded SITE in 1970, the American artist and architect James Wines has been upending visual and programmatic expectations on every scale imaginable. His most acclaimed projects are commercial and landscape projects cum witty public art: his PoMo reimagining of big-box retail for Best Products in various U.S. locations, his Ghost Parking Lot in Connecticut (featuring cars buried in asphalt) and his wacky, over-the-top Ross’s Landing Park and Plaza in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Black Light, with its black-varnished u201cbulb,u201d is bottom lit, while Plant Light and the resin-dipped Melting Light function solely as art pieces.

With his limited-edition Light Bulb Series for Foscarini, Wines pays homage to another original: the incandescent bulb, which endures as an archetype even in our LED-powered world. His explorations in blown Venetian glass are beautiful subversions of the shape. The Plant Light plays up our terrarium-obsessed moment, while Black Light, with a glowing socket and opaque black bulb, exists as “a pure inversion of function and parts.”

During NYCxDesign, Wines and his daughter Suzan created a “SITE-effect” – as Wines’s interventions have been christened – at Foscarini’s SoHo showroom. Reverse Room displayed multiples of the Black Light in an upside-down installation with an Alice in Wonderland vibe. All of the fixtures were lit by dimmable LEDs.

This story was taken from the September 2018 issue of Azure. Buy a copy of the issue here, or subscribe here.

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