Ferréol Babin first studied spatial design at L’École Nationale Supérieure d’Art in his hometown of Dijon, France, but soon realized that he felt more comfortable designing at the human scale, where he could fine-tune minute details in the objects that people interact with. After a trip to study at Nagoya University of Art & Design in Japan, and a second degree in object design completed back in France at ESAD Reims, he turned his focus to lighting. “I remember fighting with a teacher because I was obsessed with lamps,” Babin says. “He told me that the Italians in the 1970s had already experimented with everything and that I should focus on something else. This exchange had the opposite effect on me, and trying to find new lighting solutions is what I enjoy the most.”
For Babin, light is the element that creates a dialogue between an object and its environment. His work is sculptural, subtle, and sophisticated: “I like to imagine my lamps as silhouettes that are almost vanishing or sleeping when switched off,” Babin says. Phases, his graduation project, caught the eye of historic Italian lighting manufacturer FontanaArte, who worked with him to develop the Lunaire wall sconce. After the French company Moustache saw the Aurore lamp as a prototype at Galerie Tator in Lyon, they put it into production. And what’s next for Babin? “Lamps, always lamps!”