2011 was the year of the conception of the PET Lamp project in Spain, 2012 saw the launch of the Colombian experience, 2013 saw its expansion to other countries and cultures beginning with Chile, 2014 welcomed PET Lamp in a new continent, Africa, with the aim of showing the worldwide potential of this project, in 2015 we tested the application of the PET Lamp technique in Japan with the finest artisans in the world, and in 2016 we launch a new chilean version with the Mapuche indigenous from Chile.
This has been a year of consolidation for PET Lamp with already 3 collections in the market from 3 different countries: Colombia, Chile and Ethiopia. To best handle the ongoing and growing adventure of the PET Lamp project we created the new brand ACdO which will also self-produce and distribute other projects from the Studio Alvaro Catalán de Ocón, offering our clients a wider variety of products with the same philosophy and poetry – mixing industrial processes with top class local crafts.
For this years’ PET Lamp we looked back to the very beginning of the project and patiently worked for over 2 years with bamboo artisans from Kyoto, Japan. Initially we were inspired by the tea whisk from the Japanese ceremony of the tea and we immersed ourselves in deepest Kyoto in search of the highest quality bamboo crafts. Thanks to the invaluable help of Minoru Watanabe and Tanzan Kotoge we came across the best bamboo artisans working in Kyoto and thanks to Sachiko Matsuyama we managed to materialize our passion for Japanese crafts into the most impressive PET Lamps so far. We needed 3 journeys to Kyoto and over 2 years in order to enter into the very heart of the mysteries of bamboo crafts.
The result is a very special collection, each piece is a unique interpretation of the artisans we have been working with, a fruitful outcome indeed. Chiemi’s minimal and precise approach results in mysterious and clean unpretentious shapes. Hideaki’s pieces are light clean bubbles of lit bamboo floating in the air in gracious shapes. Ayako’s pieces are intriguing lines of bamboo crossing each other to create the most amazing patterns. Above all is the bamboo basketry master Mr. Ishida who has overseen the project since the beginning.
Alongside the Japan project we had a great surprise when we heard that some Mapuche artisans from the center of Chile were working on their own interpretation of the PET Lamp. Thus another project was born spontaneously which came to life thanks to the hard work of our Chilean team from Si Studio and the support of Claudia Hurtado from Ideartesana. Paula Navarrete took up the project to guide the artisans into building a new collection, which reflects the Mapuche traditional crafts and distinguishes itself from similar techniques we used in Ethiopia. This project is still ongoing and we haven’t yet developed a proper collection to offer to the market. Pictures can be seen in the newspaper though, and in the near future we will be able to market them together with the rest.
Who knows what awaits us in the coming year, but it looks like we will be jumping from Asia to the close by continent of Oceania. Do keep a track of our adventures through our new websites www.petlamp.org, www.acdo.es and Facebook page!
Alvaro Catalán de Ocón
Madrid, April 2016
Addis Abeba 2014