Winners of Natural Light present their winning solar lamp in London
In London, 3 September at the 6th VELUX Daylight Symposium, the winners of the international design competition Natural Light presented the first prototype of a solar lamp. 14,500 editions of this lamp will be distributed in Africa in the beginning of next year.
The two winners Mariana Arando (22) and Luca Fondello (23) both industrial design students at the University of Buenos Aires in Argentina. They presented their design project at the 6th VELUX Daylight Symposium in London together with artist Olafur Eliasson, who is also co-founder of Little Sun and was chairman of the jury in the competition.
When asked about what inspired the two students to design the solar lamp the winners said:
We have thought about the role of light throughout the human history. People met around the flames of a bonfire, in the sun, or some other type of light. For us, it was very important to visualize the idea of light being something that brings people together. Joining moments where people talk about the day and spend time with friends and family. The idea of light being an element that unifies people was the fundament for our design concept. With this solar lamp every member of the family can bring his or her own light home,
The chairman of the jury in the Natural Light - International Design Competition was very impressed by the creativity, innovation and thoughtfulness of the winning design:
Providing access to light is not only about answering a functional need. It is also about understanding the intimate link between energy and our aspirations, our common global desire for happiness. I strongly believe that these two aspects of design must always be seen as one. The winning design addresses both and it understands that holding energy in your hand makes you feel empowered. This design is empowering,
Distribution of the Natural Light Solar Lamp
Using an entrepreneurial distribution model, the Natural Light project will donate an initial supply of 14,500 solar lamps, which will be sold at locally affordable prices in off-grid communities without electricity in Senegal, Zimbabwe and Zambia. In this way, the Natural Light project will create employment opportunities, grow communities and thereby improve livelihood in off-grid African regions. The Natural Light solar lamps will also help preserve fresh air by reducing the widespread use of toxic carbon-emitting kerosene lanterns, and instead, harnessing the sustainable energy of the sun.
About the Natural Light - International Design Competition
The competition encouraged young and talented design students to create a special edition solar lamp in honor of the 75th anniversary of the holding group behind VELUX, VKR Holding. The Natural Light project was launched to mark the milestone of the VELUX Group’s work in improving living conditions around the world by bringing daylight into people’s homes. The VELUX Group collaborated with Little Sun, which is a social business and a global project founded by internationally renowned artist Olafur Eliasson and engineer Frederik Ottesen, to bring clean, sustainable light to people in areas of the world without electricity.
About Plan International will distribute the Natural Light lamp
Plan International will distribute the lamps. The distribution model employed is very similar in concept to micro loans, in which small local entrepreneurs who cannot obtain loans under normal circumstances due to a lack of steady income or collateral are offered small loans that can help get their businesses started. To help kick-off sales, these entrepreneurs will initially receive a stock of Natural Light lamps for free. Once they have sold their stock, the result is a profit for themselves and also the capital to purchase additional lamps to sell: establishing their own self-sustaining small businesses.
Learn more at the official Natural Light website
About the VELUX Group
For more than 75 years, the VELUX Group has created better living environments for people around the world; making the most of daylight and fresh air through the roof. Our product programme includes roof windows and modular skylights, decorative blinds, sun screening products and roller shutters, as well as installation and smart home solutions. These products help to ensure a healthy and sustainable indoor climate, for work and learning, for play and pleasure. We work globally – with sales and manufacturing operations in more than 40 countries and around 9,500 employees worldwide. The VELUX Group is owned by VKR Holding A/S, a limited company wholly owned by non-profit, charitable foundations (THE VELUX FOUNDATIONS) and family. In 2016, VKR Holding had total revenue of EUR 2.4 billion, and THE VELUX FOUNDATIONS donated EUR 155 million in charitable grants. For more information, visit www.velux.com.