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We love bespoke design projects, it is always a great pleasure to create something unique.

MOHA was originally designed as a bespoke light creation. Bespoke models are unique part of the Manooi Collection. MOHA becomes a real eye-catcher with its dashing form in any space.

 

Each of our models has a story to tell. We created MOHA as a bespoke project, but its intricate shape kept raising interest among our partners too. So we brought this interesting chandelier to the Euroluce in 2019, and it became a real hit of our stand. Since than MOHA shines in luxury interiors as a bespoke light creation of MANOOI upon request.

 

Bespoke MOHA chandeliers looks stuning in the modern interior of a penthouse in St. Petersburg. The modern style interior was designed by THE SVETOZAR ANDREEV STUDIOan international architectural group founded by architect and interior designer Svetozar Andreev. 

 

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An interview with our founders Judit Zoltai and János Héder.

Hungarian brand Manooi Light Creations stands for two main principles: a passion for light, and a labour of love. Founded by Judit Zoltai and János Héder, the designer couple manage the business together, overseeing a workshop prides itself on creativity, innovation and craftsmanship. Using only raw materials, including Swarovski crystals, its lighting designs are always handmade and true works of art.

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QUESTIONS & ANSWERS

 

  1. Manooi Light Creations was founded by János Héder and Judit Zoltai. What inspired you to create the company in Hungary in the first place?

Judit: We both graduated from the Hungarian University of Applied Arts. Since we were children, we have been making lighting objects and lamps on our own, so Manooi is also a similar inspiring game for us as adults, a place where we can use our creativity and create completely new shapes and chandeliers. It’s all about making our environment better to the extent we can by determining the images of our future.

We were both born in Budapest, so Manooi is a European company registered in Hungary, but in terms of its market and partnership it is an international brand and our products can be found almost all over the world, and we present our collections at international exhibitions.

 

  1. What did you do (individually or together) before you started Manooi?

Judit: Since I graduated as a porcelain major, the technology of processing glass, ceramic and porcelain materials attracted me. Before Manooi, I designed and made glass and porcelain lamps for individuals, office buildings, and restaurants.

János worked as an architect and interior designer at Inarchi Architecture Studio, established in 1996, which dealt with the complete image design of retail chains such as Libri, Retro, and Salamander.

In 2005, a crystal chandelier of ours was exhibited at the stand of a company called Mobilia Artica at the EuroShop in Düsseldorf, where it attracted great interest. Thanks to this success, we established Manooi, which is exclusively engaged in the design, manufacture and sale of luminaires. Our very first model was named Artica, a fixture which is still in high demand today.

 

  1. János, as the lead designer at Manooi, where do you find inspiration for each new chandelier or light installation?

János:  When I was young, I wanted to be an astronomer and the infinity of the universe gave me infinite inspiration. I lived for years in Algeria, where the purity of the desert sky is indescribably beautiful. The impact of this duality can still be found in the design of Manooi, inspired by several of our models. To offer a couple of examples: Our Ciel model (sky), depicts the glow of the stars on particularly clear desert nights, while the Wissh chandelier is about making a secret wish upon a star.

I always felt I should do something creative. At the age of 18 I decided to study architecture. But It was too solid for me, too technical, and had nothing to do with creation. I realized this was not what I wanted to do so I went to the Hungarian University of Art and Design where I graduated as an interior designer.

“Creation is our ‘mother tongue’.”

Becoming a designer was not something I was born with, but the result of my observations about the world around me, which led to an evolution in my thinking.  All of our creations are inspired by natural light. We seek to design radically modern, innovative shapes, whose radiance demands that they be focal points in a given space.

 

  1. What is your design process? How does this differ when creating something yourself versus working in collaboration with one of the designers in your studio?

János: Creating on my own is a different journey compared to working in collaboration.  Each Manooi chandelier is the fruit of an intensive creative process by our team of designers, who seek to bring beauty and luminance to the world, providing exclusive illumination to your atmosphere.

Every piece is chosen and manufactured with close attention to detail in our workshop, which means that each and every chandelier is an exclusive artistic work!

 

  1. What would you say are Manooi signatures – something that appears in each design (besides the use of crystals)? How would you describe your style?

Judit: First of all our ARTICA crystal piece serves as a Manooi certificate. It validates our chandeliers, and we put it on every chandelier where it fits the style and form.

On the other hand we have signature shapes, which over time have become a signature of our brand, just like our first crystal chandelier, Artica.

We strive for perfection and pay attention to the smallest details, both in terms of quality and design, so that our products are unique. We don’t bargain and our team works with a full commitment every day to create something special. The founding of our company entails our goal to create lasting artistic value.

 

  1. Judit, what is your role in the company and how has this evolved over the years?

We both came from the field of design, but a company requires a lot of resources and expertise in other areas as well, so I am continuously delving into new aspects of the business. According to my official job, I am the chief executive, but of course we decide cardinal issues together, both in planning and in our future directions.

As a designer, it is my responsibility to create a more harmonious and high-quality world with our products.

We also form a couple in our private lives: we have 3 children and I have to run our family as a mother at home. In the company, similarly, my job is to keep things running smoothly, to achieve our goals, for our colleagues to enjoy their work, and to develop continuously internationally as Manooi the company. Basically, I take the responsibility for having a well-functioning, ethical and recognized design company.

 

  1. What else have you created together at Manooi?

We really like to fulfil special requests. This is how the Milky Way Crystal Cow was created in cooperation with Swarovski, a piece of art which was sold at a charity auction which benefitted sick children. This crystal cow had already travelled to several countries representing the Manooi and Swarovski collaboration.

We are also proud to have created Manooi’s co-brand, Inarchi, as a modern, architectural lamp design company, with which we also achieve success in international professional circles.

In addition, we introduce a new collection every year, a ritual which we plan to take      in a whole new direction this year. We innovate with very exciting materials and techniques. In fact, this is what inspires us to create new and completely unique designs all the time.

 

 

  1. Does colour play a role in your creations?

Our coloured crystal chandeliers are becoming more and more popular.

We work with more than 40 different colours of crystals, and so far Manooi chandeliers have been made with more than 200 colour combinations.

 

  1. You work with the world’s best crystals, including Swarovski crystals. Do you have a favourite specific crystal cut or shape to work with, or a favourite crystal setting technique? Why?

Our most used crystal shape is the octagon crystal.

Up to thousands of Octogon crystals per lamp make for a  richly textured surface, a wealth of detail that has now become a trademark of Manooi. For example, our Burj model has a longer set of crystal chains than the Champs-Élysées. When decorating, we choose different crystal pendant variations to suit the basic shape.

Personally, I’m always looking forward to the innovations of the Swarovski crystal each and every time, and when I pick up the presentation palette, I admire the glittering shapes as if I were a child discovering the contents of a box full of surprises.

 

 

  1. How do you decide which Swarovski crystals to use in a particular design?

When choosing a crystal, shape is the decisive factor, depending on whether the goal is to create larger surfaces or more filigree shapes. While Swarovski beads crystals are used for our Halo and Wissh crystal chandeliers, “rectangular” crystals are used for Manooi’s Hanabi model.

Most of our crystal chandeliers are made up of octagons.

The choice of colour is definitely determined by the customer’s needs, but if the choice is left to us, we will ask for the interior design plans and our 3D modellers will suggest the most appropriate format and colour for the given interior.

 

  1. Back in 2015, we created a special cut just for Manooi, the Artica crystal. Can you tell us how this special cut came to be? What was the process of creating it?

Judit: The Artica chandelier has become an iconic symbol of the Manooi brand since Manooi was founded, and has also become the company’s logo.

The main motivation was to create a crystal for this spirituality that reflects the uniqueness and authenticity of Manooi.

Swarovski has been Manooi’s conceptual partner from the outset, inspiring our designers with the brilliance of its crystal, so we then approached Swarovski with the idea of making a bespoke, Artica-shaped crystal. János would design the shape and Swarovski’s skilled technicians would create it. The resulting Artica cut would embody the synergy between the two companies—a unique partnership.

 

  1. How have you used this crystal cut in the years since?

Judit: The Artica crystal decorates each of Manooi’s pieces to provide proof of authenticity. As a tribute to enduring partnerships and to a brilliant artistic vision, it’s the ideal embodiment of the philosophical foundations of the brand. The Artica crystal acts as a kind of certificate of authenticity.

We also use Artica crystal as jewellery, pieces of which we give as a gift to our very special partners.

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The lighting of a residence is not only a primary necessity, but has become a defining element of a house’s character and soul. You can achieve various interior lighting effects according to the needs of individual spaces.

Having the ideal lighting in a room is as fundamental as furnishing it. Light allows for enjoying the spaces to the fullest, the ability to create evoking atmospheres and to carry out one’s favourite activities, like reading a nice book, cooking or gathering around a table, even in the evening hours.

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WALL LAMPS

Every space demands careful consideration to lure one towards the choice of the most appropriate lighting. Wall lamps can emanate light without taking up space within rooms, since spotlights and sconces can decorate a wall without cluttering it or obstructing movements. Choose from among classic or modern lamps, fashioned with natural or high-tech materials, in more discreet colours that blend in with the tones of the wall, or more outlandish, eye-catching ones.

As the essence of timelessness, this remarkable wall lamp we call INFINITY WALL is designed to be the ideal companion to Manooi’s Infinity chandelier. Handmade, it is delicately assembled in Manooi’s atelier with crystals of superior quality and uses an LED light source.

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While the ceiling application of the Linea model resembles numerous, sparkling icicles suspended from a roof, the range also includes a LINEA WALL LAMP as a mounted model, as part of a complete and versatile product range.

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SILK WALL, with its classic, natural form, gives a point of reference in space. With its closed, round form, it is reminiscent of a sculpture in the round.

TABLE LAMPS

In most cases the essential functions of table lamps are not really what matters, but the fact that they improve the style of an interior, to add a classy look.

Depending on the size of your room you can choose from numerous table lamps of various sizes and shapes, from wall lamps through floor lamps all the way up to table lamps.

While the ceiling application of the Linea model resembles numerous, sparkling icicles suspended from a roof, the range also includes a LINEA TABLE LAMP and a wall-mounted model, all of which comprise this complete and versatile product range.

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As a table lamp, TONDO TABLE  steals the show from other objects in the vicinity of where it’s placed. Showing off just a glimpse of it’s gorgeous dangling crystal from the sleek housing of its lampshade, it bathes surfaces in an elegant and spectacular luminance.

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FLOOR LAMPS

Floor lamps are not only conceived as functional objects, but become a focal point in a room, defining the environment and characterizing its atmosphere. Being unfixed elements, they can be moved to bring light where it is needed. Thanks to their versatility, they can also add value to forgotten corners of the room, creating unexpected illumination in some spots.

CIELO FLOOR was designed as an antagonistic, convex version of our Ciel model. A combination of contemporary geometric strictness with gorgeous crystal embellishments, it makes for a perfect solution for contemporary luxury interiors. This model is also available as a floor lamp, which can create a remarkable effect as an ensemble with the ceiling version.

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Our TONDO FLOOR model is a treasure inside, accepting no limitation when one manipulates the light. Even as a floor lamp or as a single pendant, it may also be clustered in endless variations.

Manooi Small catalogue 2019 Final Print 2 Oldal 145 Kép 0001 másolata

 

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A shimmering waterfall of crystal projects stunning shades of autumnal colours, from yellow to amber….that’s our bespoke FJORD model.

This unique table lamp bears special meaning for MANOOI because of its special backstory.

MANOOI has been a frequent participant at the Budapest Design Week. One occasion gave us the opportunity to share our love of design in a very creative way.  In the spirit of collaboration, we invited many other professionals and design lovers in attendance to our headquarters, opening our doors and welcoming them into our universe to create something together.

 

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That’s how the FJORD table lamp was born, a result of our common passion for design.

Its composition is based on our FJORD crystal chandelier which conveys the beauty of the sparkle of Nordic ice, a gorgeous sight when it appears on the horizon across the sea. FJORD is a unique item within the Manooi product range because of its vertical arrangement, illuminating the staircases and atriums in which it is installed.

 

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Louvre Casa is a pioneer in the field of high-end home art. The company takes “promote the Chinese furniture to the world, bring the world furniture into China” as their responsibility, aims to create a more high-end, high-quality lifestyle for people. It is the first to introduce European imported furniture in China for persons with unique taste; at the same time, the Company also involves in the research and development, production, sales of self-owned brands, and extends the business to the whole household top-level customization field.

Louvre Casa with 60,000 square meters of magnificent bearing, has brought together hundreds of European top-class domestic brands, such as Versace Home, Fendi Casa, Bentley Home, Armani, and it is the world’s largest and most complete category of imported home Pavilion, where Manooi is also present with a colorful ARTICA crystal chandelier.

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The end result looks truly amazing. H2 Yacht Design’s project, a unique superyacht, includes a wine cellar featuring our flagship crystal chandelier model, ARTICA.

In fact, we came up with a custom-made ARTICA crystal chandelier specially designed for this project. During the design process, the special conditions of the interior had to be taken into account. Still, our objective was to maintain the sophisticated design of ARTICA, with its imperfect, elliptical curved and smooth shape, to ensure it is a jewel within this unique interior.

For technical safety reasons it was important that it not have a square shape, but should be completely rounded, able to handle humidity, movement, lighting systems etc. The final result, a “2.0 version” of ARTICA, was born with LED light sources, IP protection, and a fine, round shape with fixed crystals. This bespoke crystal chandelier found its place in the centre of the yacht’s wine room.

 

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Meet the designers

Kleven shipyard and Marin Teknikk/Oscar Mike have created a private luxury yacht with advanced offshore capabilities with the intent of it eventually being passed on to an equally adventurous owner. “The brief called for an expedition-style vessel with real presence,” explains Kyle Dick of Oscar Mike Naval Architects.

 

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Designed by Ar.Abin Chaudhuri, founder of one of the leading design studio’s in India, Lightkrafts Experience Centre is the embodiment of elegancy and sophistication. The luxury design of Artica, with its elliptical curved and smooth shape, is perfectly in harmony with the smooth ceiling and its high-quality crystals act a jewel to the space. The living area, perfect for the official discussions, gatherings alike is arranged around the ellipse of Artica.

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Koi JAV

Manooi looks for mutual success and long-term cooperation with its partners. We are always open to being part of new and challenging projects with our partners. A perfect example is the collaboration between Manooi and Tawazen Interior Design, led by Fouad Mirza, Tawazen‘s Founder and Creative Director.

Although Tawazen has always maintained a high level of quality in their work, this project was an extra challenge due to the strict requirements of the project owner, as the building was built for VIP users and guests. It was designed with meticulous attention to detail in terms of finishes and quality. The design is a mixture of rich Arabic cultural heritage and 21st-century sensibilities. The elegant interior was enriched by unique chandeliers of the Manooi product range. KOI, possibly the most classical shape in the Manooi catalog, was chosen to light up the meeting room. Koi’s versatility makes it adaptable to all kinds of environments, and it provides a well-defined geometrical light.

 

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When it comes to being a designer, János Héder, MANOOI co founder and brainchild behind the company’s exquisite lighting creations, says he shares a sentiment that his company likes to tout: “Creation is our ‘mother tongue’.”

But, in his case, becoming a designer was not something he was born with, but the result of his observations about the world around him, which led to an evolution in his thinking. 

“When you’re young,” he explains, “you don’t realize that being a designer is a profession; you’ve only noticed that there are objects around you – and that’s how it is.”

“Design” as a concept was even more of a mystery to him, seeing as he grew up in socialist Hungary, where goods, housewares, utilitarian objects, cars, etc. were “one size fits all” and sometimes had to be cherished and used for decades. “Everyone had exactly the same objects, the same home interiors, etc.”

János recalls that the things in his parents’ flat provided him food for thought. “Those things were natural, but whatever there was I had different ideas on how it should look and that it was possible to improve upon it – when you don’t feel that things are in harmony with themselves, they just don’t go together: ‘that rug doesn’t go with the table’, for example.”

Back then, entire blocks of flats were all fitted out with exactly the same things: silverware, plates, furniture, whatever you can imagine. One department store chain had a slogan that went “Irreplaceable because they’re replaceable”.

“So if you broke it, you went in and bought another,” he explains. “This was such shitty logic and I hated it.”

“When things are mass produced – 100,000 pieces of something that has no thought behind it – that really disturbs me, because with a little care it could be something different, but they’ve taken every kind of uniqueness out of it which might strike our fancy.”

In contrast, János says he likes items that are really well thought out and work well as well as objects that have a heritage and which provide some perspective on past times.

Given that few car brands were available back then, one way in which Hungarians dabbled in modifying utilitarian design was in how they customized their cars – many times the Russian Lada – to differentiate them. 

“They looked really lame,” says János, who also remembers having his breath taken away when seeing a very not lame Lamborghini Countach for the first time at Lake Balaton. It was noticeable that much thought had been put into the sports car’s design, and it struck a nerve with him.

“Something’s not right,” he realized, concluding that it was possible to make better things than what was available in Hungary.

 

First creations – a school project

Then, when he was 10-years-old, János got an assignment to build something. He took a beer can, cut a hole in it, installed a socket and put in a lightbulb – it was a lamp, his first official creation.

“I realized how simple it was. You set your mind to it and do it, and then there is something different, something new.”

At that time, he realized that there are individuals – designers – who come up with such objects; they don’t emerge by themselves. “There were people who came up with the Moskvitch and the Lamborghini, and that’s something we can also do.”

While he felt like a misfit in his own culture, his family’s trips to Italy, where the proportions of objects and details seemed more true, were enlightening. 

He explains, “Since I had no other weapon in my arsenal, I decided I wanted to be able to create a future reality, through which one can improve things.”

János went on to create all kinds of things, like furniture for example, deciding to study in the Faculty of Architecture in Budapest, later changing to Interior Design and graduating in both that and architecture.

He says his objective was not to manufacture things but to design a house for someone else, or the interiors of restaurants or shops, creating spaces where people feel good. 

“For a long time I designed shops, because I don’t like to shop,” he says. “My intention was to create spaces that I would gladly enter, where I would understand the products and find what I needed. I had a very basic concept of how I thought a shop should look, and I did my best to realize that – and it worked.”

János says his first real success was the interior design of a restaurant that received a fabulous reception from those who entered.

He adds that he has never wanted to manufacture something on an assembly line. “I’ve always been interested in creating things that have emotional content, something that does entail architectural logic but also moves people emotionally – things that spark interest and conversation.”

 

A holistic approach fueling creativity

Today, when asked what fuels his creativity, he explains that while working interior design he reached a point in his career where he was aware of his knowledge, but also aware of what he didn’t know. “I had a good perspective on the field that I was working in, and as you go forward in time so many different experiences come together, so that I’m not considering things from the standpoint of a lighting designer but rather how it is possible to improve things out of some sort of logic,” he explains.

“Increasingly, almost anything inspires me and I have an opinion about almost anything I see. From that standpoint, it could be furniture or architectural design that moves me.”

János says that as a designer, one must have an instinct regarding how materials can be used, or how they can be combined; it is crucial to consider what can they contribute.

 

Classic elements remain classic

As for his approach as a designer with a special perspective, he believes not everything needs to be new or completely modernized.

János recalls one incident which illustrates this: “We designed a restaurant space and a marketing guy showed up and said ‘don’t include arches because they’re not timeless.’

“These kinds of deliberate, scientific perspectives don’t work (for me),” he comments. “Objects, in and of themselves, need to be very technical – they’re created with the sentiment of making people’s lives better. It’s that simple. Sentiments that fall outside of that are a bit constipated.”

According to him, there are some things that will always be a given, like a rainbow. 

“You’re not going to change it because someone believes that it should be upside down in the 21st century. There are some elementary things, which people will always communicate: a sunset, a mountain, a reflection of light off of water – those things, which are universal, are in objects, and those materials and forms which have worked thus far.”

 

 

Manooi’s ORIGO lamp is truly an original – a modern lighting fixture that gives the impression of a precious jewel. 

Designed to add light for a wide variety of functions through a fine combination of crystal and LED-sourced light, ORIGO is a completely novel, streamlined, compact design composed of classic materials, like red copper, crystal and stainless steel.

ORIGO units, which are housed in tubular and conical forms, or affixed to a plate-like base, can be installed as a single light source, or they can be arranged in clusters that make up a lamp of any size as part of a group of components – one can assemble as many of the pendant light fixture elements as they like.

A prime example of ORIGO’s flexibility is the intricate, 3-tiered ORIGO Star Set, a modern take on the classic arm chandelier, which comes in many different sizes, can be assembled in a wide variety of arrangements and attached in numerous ways. The asymmetric array of ORIGO Pulsar takes those sentiments on a more futuristic journey.

ORIGO is revolutionary, requiring a completely unique way of stringing together crystals that requires extreme care. For Manooi, the compact nature and adaptability of ORIGO units are also an achievement, because this fine combination of LED and Swarovski crystal gives off a glowing luminescence that adds warmth to any space.

Manooi’s ORIGO line came to life in 2017, making its debut in Milan, where it welcomed entrants in a “star gate” formation comprised of black mirrored glass and 60 ORIGO fixtures.