A JAMAICAN ON A MISSION: Claire Requa
Internationally acclaimed Jamaican furniture and jewellery designer Claire Requa recently won the prestigious A' Design Award & Competition award in Italy, within the Lighting and Lighting Projects Design Category, for her stunning transparent acrylic chandeliers. SO first shared news of this talented designer in April of 2010 during her visit to Kingston where she was raised and had her two children and from where she relocated to California in 1980. Requa later made Copenhagen, Denmark her home a mere eight years later wih her husband Robert, a Dane.
Her winning design, which comes from her lighting series Claire de Lune or light of the moon, took approximately a year to complete. "After six months of not sleeping through the night, tweaking the design, the mechanics, researching the materials, and the processes of how it might be produced, I arrived at a prototype that I was finally satisfied with and took it to a trade show in Denmark," stated Requa. "It was also important to me that the packaging be as eco-friendly as possible and that the disposing of any waste material be eco-responsible," she further explained. "The chandeliers had a simple and modest start in 2005 as a flat pack, inexpensive (my) alternative to a plain rice lamp... I designed it to resemble a traditional chandelier/candelabra, but using a modern material (the first version was polypropylene, an eco-firendly plastic)," explained Requa. Her award-winning chandelier was later remade using acrylic material instead of polypropylene.
Requa's chandeliers were used on the 2009 set of Giulia, a German talent search programme, and its design has also been featured on plates mounted at The New English art exhibition in London. SO2 shares highlights of Requa's commendable achievement.