While Lucie Koldova was born in the Czech Republic, the designer's love for France is immediately apparent in her work. Take Macaron, which translates the iconic shape of this sweet meringue-based confection into a glass and stone light you almost want to take a bite out of.
In just seven short years, since launching her first two lighting collections in 2010 for Czech manufacturer Brokis, Koldova has gone on to be represented by the likes of Czech companies Lasvit and Lugi, Italian firm Fabbian and French brands La Chance and Haymann Editions, among others.
Most recently she was named the 2018 designer for prestigious German trade show IMM Cologne's Das Haus, an experimental home installation. Here she reveals to Interior Design where she likes to travel, her favorite place in an urban landscape, and more.
Interior Design: Where did you grow up, and how did it influence your work?
Lucie Koldova: I grew up outside Prague, but left after graduation for Paris, where I lived for four years. France influenced my work big time. Paris is saturated with so many different art, design, and conceptual styles. In Prague, it's developing, but we are still catching up on most of the things that are now quite trendy.
ID: What made you return to the Czech Republic?
LK: I work with glass, and glass is why I came back. I discovered what discipline we are good at, and am trying to develop this even further. I feel honored to continue the tradition.
ID: You were invited to be the 2018 designer for IMM's Das Haus. What are you currently working on for that?
LK: I am working on upholstered pieces and will bring in new lighting concepts as well. The house is about light, so that will be the main topic.
ID: Can you describe a few recent products?
LK: I recently designed three lighting collections, Lens F46 for Fabbian and Macaron and Puro for Brokis. For Lens F46, the brief was to create a large-scale chandelier or large-scale pendant light for the U.S. market. I started by brainstorming what material to use, since the scale would be too huge to manufacture from glass. I came up with perforated metal lenses that create a kind of universe with indirect lighting.
With Macaron, I tried to find a solution for mounting a stone between two glass domes. Onyx bleeds light perfectly, and reveals its natural precious structure.
Puro is quite different from what I have done before. It is based on a geometric visual concept, and I played with vertical and horizontal lines to create pendants with a combination of direct light and LED lighting tubes.
ID: Which past products are you most proud of and why?
LK: Balloons (Brokis, 2011) which I did with Dan Yeffet stands out for its pure style. Capsula (Brokis, 2013) is sort of a complex art pendant piece. It's all glass, so it was more difficult to make and took many years to produce.
ID: What makes you feel creative?
LK: I am most inspired by places. Therefore I travel to Paris, London, New York, Milan. I combine traveling to see fairs with personal traveling. I am also inspired by the glass factory I use. When I see people working on my pieces, that is quite refreshing.
ID: Latest interiors pet peeve?
LK: When people try to impress others. I don't like when people try to do something that is crazy for shock value.
ID: Personal preference: town house or loft, cottage or estate?
LK: Loft. I live in something close to a loft, and have a loft studio. Space is a luxury, and I like when I have a lot of space above my head so I can breathe.
ID: City, country, or beach?
LK: City because I want to be surrounded by people. I like being in the middle, where everything happens. I am a café person and love going out... and this is where I find inspiration, by working in cafés and meeting people.
ID: What way of working works particularly well for you?
LK: I always talk to people to realize what I think is best for the project. I need to communicate. There's not one pattern, because my work is so wild, and there are many projects I am doing at once. But when I am satisfied and happy I find a peace in my mind.