Michael Anastassiades: Designing Geometric Simplicity

Margarita Akritidou

Cypriot-born, London-based designer Michael Anastassiades is known for creating elegant, clean-lined and functional work that displays a fine balance between art and design and encourages an almost symbiotic relationship between the object and its user. Using natural materials such as stone, wood, metal and glass, Anastassiades creates timeless and contemporary lighting, furniture, mirrors, jewellery and table-top objects that answer both the practical, aesthetical and emotional needs of their users.

Ball Vase (Cast Brass) & 120V CFL with pendant rod

Initially trained as a civil engineer at London’s Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, Anastassiades obtained a master’s degree in industrial design from the city’s prestigious Royal College of Art. Committed to the integrity of his work and striving to maintain his creative flow, he decided to launch his own studio in 1994, where he conceived and developed his first designs, relying on small, locally run artisan shops to fabricate components. Not before long, his work started to attract world-wide attention that ensured him commercial collaborations with pioneering design manufacturers such as FLOS, Lobmeyr and Svenskt Tenn, as well as the opportunity to exhibit in permanent collections at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Craft Council in London, the FRAC Centre in Orleans, France, and the MAK in Vienna.

Mobile Chandelier

In 2007, Anastassiades created his own signature brand and launched his own shop to showcase his products and collections,. At the same time, he further outsourced his production by establishing collaborations with artisans and workshops around the world, in a quest to find the highest quality materials and finest detailing in craftsmanship. Anastassiades was a nominee for the Designer of the Year Award 2014 of Design Awards organised by Wallpaper Magazine, and a nominee for the British Design Awards 2013 organised by ELLE Decoration.

Tube Wall Light Brass, Image courtesy of Michael Anastassiades

The ruling principle in Anastassiades’ creative universe is subtraction, and it is often channelled in his favourite medium, lighting. Geometry offers to Anastassiades inspiration for clean and simple forms that permit him to free his objects from any unnecessary elements, and to highlight the intrinsic qualities of the materials he uses. His lights decorate hotels, restaurants and stores worldwide, including the Grand Hotel Stockholm, Soho House New York and Sergio Rossi boutiques. One of his most famous pieces, the chic Tube Chandelier designed in 2006, embodies his philosophy of balance, purity and coolness. This stunning piece of lighting can be seen in Bungalow 8 in Mumbai, India, and was featured in the Brioni Show Fall/Winter 2015/2016.

Tube Chandelier & TWL

Also exemplary of flawless geometric aesthetic and complex engineering is his signature Tip of the Tongue pedestal table light, designed and manufactured in 2013, a spherical ball light sitting at the edge of a cylinder that creates an intriguing tension. The same balance dynamic and geometrical simplicity can be seen in his stunning series String Lights and IC Lights designed for FLOS in 2014, with the latter being inspired by contact juggling. Beyond their obvious functionality, these striking pieces composed of geometrical strings and spheres give the impression of floating in space in an almost musical way.

Tube Wall Light Nickel, Image courtesy of Michael Anastassiades

Anastassiades’ creations can be found in his shop in London at 122 Lower Marsh, London SE1 7AE, or online.

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