What are the most important things you keep in mind when designing for Juniper?
For Juniper, it seems we are always looking for something that is both new and innovative, yet at the same time, familiar. This is a fine line to walk. While there is no reason to make something that has already been made, creating something “new” for the sake of “new” is also not a reasonable justification. You can feel this type of logic not only in my work with Juniper but all of the products they produce.
This will sound like a planted line, but I swear it is not… One more notable thing about working with Juniper is their own internal quality bar. Shant and the team believe in making amazing products and it shows as they work through detail on the THIN projects.
Tell us about the THIN Collection—what are its qualities and what inspired you to create it?
The THIN Collection as it exists now was not an inspired vision. Very much the contrary. It is a living, breathing footprint of products. The first, and possibly most recognizable silhouette in the collection is the THIN Task Lamp. The idea behind it was fairly simple, LED’s allow us to completely break free from the constraints of the more traditional incandescent lamps. Embracing the opportunity, we worked to achieve a very small diameter tubing while still providing great light. The reduction in volume allows us to increase the reach of the lamp without being too imposing. The design can actually extend comfortably over a work surface. From a materials standpoint, most of the LED lighting at the time felt “techy” and “producty” somehow making this very elegant light source feel inappropriate. The brass tubing, bearing-style hinge and cast iron base work together to create a lamp that feels both new and familiar at the same time. Perhaps an instant classic.
Could you take us through the design process, from when you first had the idea to the creation of the final product? What makes the THIN Collection unique?
Like many product lines, the THIN Collection has been continuously evolving since its inception. It seems each step forward with the line sheds light on what to do next. The first in the family was the THIN Task Lamp as discussed above. Since then, we have very naturally added to the line. First, we added more color options and the second addition was making a smaller more attainable version of the Task Lamp. Soon, the Floor Lamp and THIN Suspension series were born and it began to shed light on its own future… The THIN Collection has taken on a life of its own.
The THIN system’s uniqueness lies in the flexibility that it provides. It is now a vast toolkit that provides almost infinite creativity, like LEGOs for designers and architects. It can be used in subtle ways like lighting art or providing under-cabinet lighting that is worthy of amazing interiors. The system can also be used in incredibly expressive ways, some of the wall lighting arrangements (which by the way, seems hard to find/understand on the site) and the THIN Primaries start to hint at just how far you can take it.
One thing I think is difficult to convey is just how great of a toolkit we have developed. As designers start to see it, I think we will see a whole new wave of creativity. It enables a level of reasonably priced high-quality customizable modern lighting that simply doesn’t otherwise exist.
What’s next for Juniper and the THIN Collection?
The future is hard to predict, but we will likely continue to evolve and add to the THIN organically. Right now there are more additions and tweaks to make than we can get out the door and I don’t see that slowing down in the near future. I am also hoping that as architects and designers start to really work with and understand the system they will let us know what they need/want out of it.