Magpie-eyes rejoice as Swarovski crystal lights up the Design Museum

Designers including Ron Arad, Maarten Baas, rAndom International, Yves Béhar, Troika and Fredrikson Stallard have been asked to create installations using Swarovski crystal for a new exhibition called Digital Crystal being held at the Design Museum. Digital Crystal: Swarovski at the Design Museum is on until Jan 2013 and if a bit of bling is your thing, then it's definitely worth a visit...

Digital Crystal: Swarovski at the Design Museum

Speaking about the collaboration, Nadja Swarovski creative director of  Swarovski (pictured above) says: 'It's an honour that the Design Museum has chosen to work with us on this forward-thinking exhibition. To work with such creative minds and to see how they have responded to the brief is fascinating and offers new insights into our changing relationship with memory and technology. Swarovski’s passionate commitment to cutting-edge contemporary design and innovation is driven by our work with these visionaries who push the boundaries of how crystal can be used as a creative ingredient.'

Some of the installations have been created especially for the exhibition and some have been taken from the Swarovski archive and been updated. For example, Lolita - a crystal chandelier by Ron Arad (pictured above) - was originally designed for Swarovski Crystal Palace in 2004. Hidden within its 2000 or so Swarovski crystals are more than 1000 white LEDs, so anyone who sends an SMS message to Lolita can see their message travel around the crystal, through her spiral form.

The talk of the town is British designer Paul Cocksedge’s Crystallize (above). His installation works by shooting light at a crystal. The result is a series of perfectly-aligned mirrors that creates classic diamond shapes floating in mid-air.

Design Museum Director, Deyan Sudjic, says: "With the demise of the analogue era, our relationship and connection with personal memory, photographs, diaries, letters, time and ephemera is changing. 'Digital Crystal: Swarovski at the Design Museum' questions our relationship with the changing world. It seems all too easy to lose connection with the tangible and the real, as we move ever faster through a digital age where memory and the personal possessions we once held so highly are now on-line, or gone in an instant."

(Pictures by David Levene)

The Digital Crystal exhibition is on at the Design Museum until 13 January 2013.

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Katie Treggiden, Guest Editor

View all posts by Katie Treggiden, Guest Editor