Long before a summer blockbuster opens, the team behind it releases a teaser trailer to let audiences know that something big is coming. In that same spirit, Lambert & Fils started building anticipation for Silo, its latest and most cinematic collection yet, six months early.
During last November’s belated 2021 edition of NYCxDesign, the Montreal-based lighting studio celebrated its then-year-old New York showroom with a candlelit funhouse-like installation by Montreal interiors firm Atelier Zébulon Perron. Mirrors and ruby-red structural framing set the stage for pan flute–like arrangements of aluminum tubes, each one filled with hand-poured wax and a burning wick.
Throughout the store’s lively Monday night party, there were whispers from the Lambert & Fils design team that these makeshift candelabra — some suspended, others freestanding — were actually a kind of prototype. “We had just gotten these extrusion samples, so we were like little kids who wanted to show off our new toys,” says creative director Samuel Lambert. “But we wanted a way to show them that hinted at materiality without revealing the lamp.”
The true product unveiling took place in the brand’s Tribeca showroom this May. Silo, a modular Lambert & Fils lighting collection featuring extruded aluminum cylinders, made its red-carpet debut alongside a series of crimson CC-Tapis rugs that extended from the floor right onto the walls.
But the full-blown, IMAX-style showstopper arrived during Milan Design Week at Alcova, where Lambert & Fils constructed an eight-day “aperitivo garden” dubbed Caffè Populaire. Installed in a former military hospital’s laundry facility, Silo sconces, chandeliers and floor lamps in mirrored polished aluminum and glossy oxblood finishes continued the palette of previous installations, complemented by a few pieces in textured midnight blue. Several Silo tubes were also used to form a water fountain that flowed from inside toward the garden bar and seating area.
Designed by Milan’s DWA Design Studio, the pop-up was industrial but also quite pretty, thanks in part to New York wallpaper brand Superflower, whose patterns lined both the walls and the bottom of the fountain. “Each phase of the launch took shape from collaborators who led us in different and very interesting directions,” says Lambert & Fils marketing director Rory Seydel. “The overall plan was strategic, but each one was also kind of spontaneous,” adds Lambert.
Especially amid the atypical show schedule of the past two years, Lambert & Fils offered a lesson in how to plot a perfectly paced trilogy of global launch events. After all, blockbusters shouldn’t exist inside a silo.
How the Montreal lighting brand executed a three-part product launch spanning multiple years and continents.