Eternal e-flame: Mathieu Lehanneur’s solar powered Parisian lighting
Crafted to resemble 'trees' sprouting from Paris’ urban underbelly, French designer Mathieu Lehanneur’s new eco-conscious urban street furniture looks thoroughly at home on the city’s streets. The collection, entitled 'Clover', has been sculpted from wood and consists of solar-powered lighting accompanied by an extendable bench. Lehanneur takes a humanistic approach to the needs of city dwellers, affording them a moment out from their hectic metropolitan lifestyle to ‘break and recharge’.
'Clover' is comprised of a series of binaries. As Lehanneur explains, these are ‘hybrid objects par excellence, combining light and seating, wood and solar panels, town and country’. He has adopted a hand-crafted aesthetic to give the impression that the floor-lamps and bench have been polished by hand; in reality they have been produced digitally by means of a pioneering approach, which allows for several wood types to be blended together.
The light fitting consists of two aluminium domes, which direct light onto a specific area of pavement in order to reduce light pollution and energy loss. An additional upward facing dome contains solar panels that power the LED lights for up to three hours at a time. At the base of the lamp sits a small hatch with a power point allowing for phone charging, while the bench can be extended to over 15m long if needed.
'Clover' was launched to coincide with COP21, the UN’s Conference on Climate Change, which took place in Paris at the end of last year. The same conference which saw the unveiling of Diller Scofidio + Renfro's EXIT at Palais de Tokyo and Shepard Fairey's Earth Crisis at the Eiffel Tower.