Nicci Green from Articolo lighting
We finally made it to the Articolo showroom in Richmond and unsurprisingly we were blown away (pun intended) to see Nicci Green’s gorgeous range of mouth-blown lighting, lamps, pendants and wall sconces in the flesh. The setting for her creative process is the beautiful and carefully considered space designed by David Goss of Studio Goss, and it's definitely worth having a look if you get the chance.
Through Nicci’s unique bold style and mastery over her materials she balances playful individuality with restrained elegance in every piece. One thing I’ve always loved about Nicci Green’s range is that each piece has its own voice and often each piece is visually quite different from the next, but all her works are unified by Nicci’s timeless, great design and respect for her materials.
It’s no wonder that she has been so successful in her career so far, and it was a delight to get to know her and her creative process a little better. We’re sure you will enjoy this Q&A, and we recommend checking out her range and even making an appointment to see it in person at her stunning Richmond showroom.
MM: What initially drew you to lighting?
NG: At time the time of starting Articolo, designing and manufacturing lighting in Australia was quite uncommon, with most of the high-end decorative lighting coming out of Europe and the United States. I didn’t know anything about lighting – which in hindsight, is perhaps a blessing as I may never have embarked on this journey had I been aware of the challenges. I’ve never been formerly trained in design, and as I don’t come from a lighting background, I’m not restricted by a traditional approach. For me lighting is an innate process, informed by the way I see the world and my vast life experiences.
MM: What inspires you?
NG: My inspiration is my passion for and experience in design – initially food styling, and later interior design and product design. This has informed the direction of Articolo, where my love for design that is both contemporary and timeless has been realised through form. I sought to design lighting that was easy to live with: both decorative and functional. Each piece must provide soul through shadow play, with a unique handwriting and sensibility that sets Articolo apart. Inspiring this design brief that I created for myself – and for Articolo – was a desire to design products for a global market, bridging my passion for creating with my love of travel.
MM: What project are you most proud of?
NG: Most recently, the opening of new showroom and studio. We were driven by a desire to showcase our lighting within a space more akin to a gallery than a traditional showroom. The result represents my vision for how Articolo pieces beautifully intersect with interior spaces. Working with architect David Goss of Studio Goss, the existing floorplan was adapted through the repositioning of existing walls, to create a cohesive sequence of spaces that tell the varied stories of our lighting. I feel privileged and proud to welcome clients to this beautiful space, and to work in it every day.
MM: What has been the most unexpected moment in your career?
NG: I am humbled by the attention Articolo is attracting from all around the world. We are passionate about designing products that are considered and of the highest quality, and to see them specified by clients such as Tiffany & Co, Nobu and the Grand Hyatt is incredibly rewarding and motivating.
MM: Did you grow up in a creative household?
NG: Interestingly, my family is quite creative. My aunt was a sculpture and potter, and an uncle on my mother’s side was also an artist. On my father’s side, both my cousin and uncle are artists. My father is also an exceptional woodworker, so you could definitely say I grew up in a creative environment.
MM: How has technology changed the way you work?
NG: It hasn’t. I’m a technophobe and old school so I still draw everything by hand.
MM: What advice would you give a young designer? What advice would you give an old designer?
NG: Regardless of age, I would encourage everyone to never put a limit on his or her dreams. With or without training and qualifications, you can achieve anything you set your mind to.
MM: What are your hopes for the next few years?
NG:We are so excited to be opening our first international showroom in New York in the not too distant future. I’m confident it will be the first of many in key locations around the globe. We’re also exploring the world of furniture as an extension of our core lighting proposition. It’s a thrilling time.
MM: Can you recommend a good read and/or a playlist?
NG: I recently finished reading ‘Sunflower’ by Simon Wiesenthal, which makes you wrestle with a question about forgiveness. And I love ‘365 Days of Wonder’, which is a collection of quotes and wise words, one for every day of the year. I have given this book to my son and many of my friend’s children. It is a great reminder and reference for what’s important in life.
MM: What do you do to relax?
NG: I love cooking for friends and family, and I also love to go for long walks. Being out in nature is both calming and inspiring, especially after a long week in the studio.
MM: What can’t you live without?
NG: I couldn’t live without my son, my friends and family – or my endless library of architecture and design books.