In the creative studio - The Art of Light by Przemek Krawczynski

25 of January '22

The calabash is an annual is a climbing plant native to Africa and Asia. Its dried and hollowed fruits are used to create a variety of everyday objects. What else can be created from this bizarre plant? Meet Przemek Krawczynski - Polish "Clockmaker of Light".

Lampa Cantamena Lampa Cantamena

Cantamena lamp

© Calabarte

A gift from my mother

Thanks to a calabash given as a gift from his mother in 2009, everything started. Przemek then decided to make a lamp from it for his room, and so his great passion began. Creating lamps gave him great joy, and that's why after some time he went to Senegal, quitting his normal job in an architectural studio, and brought 20 African calabashes from there. Transporting them was quite a challenge, he was helped in this crossing by as many as 12 people!

Work and passion

Przemek is self-taught, he has never attended any craft courses. Probably because of his interests and strict way of thinking, his lamps are full of harmonious patterns of precisely plotted grids and geometries. The inspiration for his creations comes mainly from fractal art.

I want customers to be aware that I put my heart into each lamp, from start to finish. This is the greatest value of my works. I also believe that there is still much to be discovered in light and calabash.

Lampy mają kilkadziesiąt tysięcy otworów 

The lamps have several tens of thousands of holes

© Calabarte

How are these unique lamps created?

Each calabash fruit is unique - a work of nature. In the same way, each lamp is unique. The process of its creation takes up to several months. The founder of the Calabarte brand does all the work himself, and puts great effort and heart into each lamp.
The first step, of course, is to debark the calabash and clean its interior. Next, an auxiliary grid is applied to its oval shape, and then begins the very complicated process of creating patterns, refined to perfection. Then begins the drilling of holes made with, among other things... professional dental drills! The number of drillings varies depending on the pattern and the size of the lamp. In the largest ones, the number of holes reaches up to 30 thousand!

I have to do most of the carving work in the dark, i.e. only with the light inside the calabash, so I can control their depth and the thickness of the wood (in some places it is thinner than 1 mm).

Przemek started by creating smaller table lamps. Then his work evolved to creating floor lamps. The process of creating one lamp is extremely labor- and time-intensive - it currently takes 3 to 5 months.

Lampa stołowa Alisa ze zgaszoną żarówką wewnątrz Lampa stołowa Alisa ze zgaszoną żarówką wewnątrz

Alisa table lamp with the bulb inside extinguished

© Calabarte

Beautiful by day, even more beautiful by night

Thehandmade lamps look beautiful during the day, when the light inside them is extinguished. They are works of art and unique sculptures. However, all the magic begins after dark, when their interior is filled with light. The entire room is then decorated with thousands of tiny luminous beads, creating a real mosaic on the walls and furnishings. Such an interior has a unique atmosphere, after all, everyone knows how much floor lamps can change in our interiors.

Elaboration: Dominika Tyrlik

Photos and information courtesy of Przemek Krawczynski © Calabrate

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