As part of London Design Festival’s Designersblock, British brand Plumen debuted the Glowing Oak, a gorgeous lighting installation that toes the line between fantasy and reality. Located on the top floor of London’s iconic and decayed Old Sessions House, the Glowing Oak comprises a real 16-foot-tall oak tree laced with Plumen’s hanging light bulbs. The striking installation creates a curious contrast between the courthouse’s old classic architecture, the modern and high-tech low energy bulbs, and the enchanting presence of a living tree.
The 32,000-square-foot Old Sessions House, which served as Designersblock’s venue for the London Design Festival, was once one of England’s largest courthouses, and is usually closed to the public. To take full advantage of the rare opportunity to exhibit in the Old Sessions House and to create an installation befitting the building’s grandeur, Plumen sought to create a piece that would be both “delicate and majestic.” “We love that viewers have to climb to the top of the building to catch sight of it,” write the designers. “The staircase [acts] like a passageway to an undiscovered world before revealing the tree, basking gently as it stands.”
The final design took over three days to install and uses an oak tree sourced from a sustainable tree farm in Sussex. A big challenge for the designers was figuring out how to safely haul the 16-foot-tall oak tree up four flights of stairs. Energy efficient Plumen 002 light bulbs with copper drop caps are strung delicately around the tree’s branches. The Glowing Oak was on view to the public from September 18 to September 21, 2014.
Images via Plumen