Magda Jurek, known as Ms. Jurek, is a versatile artist. She designs not only lamps, tables and mirrors, but also books. One of them is "PSIKUSY. Remix your dog" - a project that allows you to learn more about the dog's nature and create your own mutt. The designer draws inspiration literally from everywhere. See one of the most interesting facets of contemporary Polish design!
In her designs, Ms. Jurek is inspired by painting, laboratory glass, senses and signs, among others. Each product coming out from under her hands carries a rich history and each is the result of a different fascination.
Basia Hyjek: How were the individual lamps born? What did the design process look like?
Magda Jurek: The story of each project is different, although design threads and fascinations are intertwined. Sometimes the starting point is an idea, an unexpected vision, which later needs to be given shape. Such was the case with Maria SC, a lamp made of test tubes. I imagined a vase floating above the table and combined this with my fascination with laboratory glass. The result is a lamp that is classic in form and can be arranged in many different ways. This is a very simple design whose strength is the concept. Nowadays it seems obvious and often copied, at the time it was very fresh.
I imagined a vase that floats above the table and combined this with my fascination with laboratory glass
© Ms. Jurek
In contrast, the reason for the two sister lamps KOLO, which I designed with architect Piotr Musiałowski, was a need - a market shortage. We wanted to create lamps with low luminescence, building atmosphere, designed for relaxation and for people who do not like to fall asleep in the dark. We wanted to be able to reduce the light, down to twilight. At the time, I was involved in designing sensory toys for children with dysfunctions, which opened me up to the sensual layer of design.
We wanted to be able to adjust the light intensity to the user's needs and mood by playing with the object. From this marriage, the KOLO Magnet lamp and KOLO Sand were created. In the former, moving the magnetic disc opens a wide spectrum of light effects, evoking astronomical phenomena, while the latter works on the principle of an hourglass, in which falling glass sand creates a mesmerizing drawing on the lamp's dial, and the spilling of sand is accompanied by a gentle rustle.
We depended on the possibility of reducing the light, down to twilight
© Ms. Jurek
TRN's latest collection, which also includes lamps, stems from my long-standing fascination with the paintings of Jan Tarasin and my shared obsession with his search for rhythms and signs in space. Tarasin painted pictures in which he depicted objects as series of signs and symbols. I reversed this process and turned ideograms into things. I wanted to create something that would free me from the primacy of function, a project where I could think with images.
I am a painter by training and naturally use painterly categories in design - composition, form, color. I chose ceramics as the material for the lamps, not only because of the nobility of this material, but also because the colors of the glazes are second to none in terms of depth and saturation. Both lamps and furniture from this collection can be juxtaposed like a string of script characters, creating spatial compositions. The TRN collection was preceded by an object realized for the exhibition, for which the starting point was descriptions of "seeing" by blind people. In this work I tried to map the shapes of things perceived by touch. This work solidified my need to design a collection based on a sign that transforms in space, Wanting to emphasize this continuity and complexity of inspiration, I included it in the photo shoot of the TRN collection.
TRN's latest collection stems from my long-standing fascination with Jan Tarasin's paintings and my shared obsession with his search for rhythms and signs in space
photo: PION Studio
The design process for me is, to some extent, similar to painting pictures. I move in the world of my small obsessions, which intermingle and pass one into the other. Each subsequent project has something from the previous one and is the seed of the next one.
Basia: Do you yourself have lamps of your own design in your home?
Magda: I have many lamps in my home, also of my own design. Some are prototypes and unimplemented experiments. Others are mostly lamps from the 1960s-90s and nameless oddities that tempted me with their unobvious beauty.