Akari Lamp

Iconic Vitra Akari lamp

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Shop the Akari Lamp: Iconic Vitra Akari lamp

Vitra Akari lamp

The Akari lamp stands as an iconic embodiment of simplicity and grace in the realm of lighting design. Designed by Isamu Noguchi, this lamp is celebrated for its ethereal glow and delicate paper construction, creating an ambiance that transcends mere illumination. The Akari series, meaning "light" in Japanese, captures the essence of Noguchi's artistic vision, offering a harmonious blend of sculptural elegance and functional luminosity.

How it all started

Isamu Noguchi crafted the Akari Lamp in the post-war period, unveiling the first prototypes in the 1950s. The design reflects Noguchi's fascination with traditional Japanese craft techniques, particularly the use of washi paper. The combination of delicately folded paper and bamboo ribs allows the Akari Lamp to emit a soft, diffused light, evoking a sense of tranquility. The Akari series, with its diverse shapes and sizes, became an integral part of mid-century modern design, adorning homes, public spaces, and exhibitions globally.

Mastermind behind

Isamu Noguchi, born in Los Angeles in 1904, was a Japanese-American artist and sculptor. Renowned for seamlessly blending Eastern and Western artistic influences, Noguchi's diverse body of work includes sculptures, gardens, and furniture design. The Akari Lamp, with its poetic simplicity, exemplifies his ability to infuse functionality with artistic expression. Noguchi's legacy extends beyond the Akari Lamp, encompassing a rich tapestry of artistic achievements that have left an indelible mark on the world of design and sculpture, such as the Noguchi coffee table and the Flowerpot lamp.

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What makes the Vitra Akari lamp so special?

Soft and diffused lighting

The Akari Lamp's soft and diffused lighting is a result of its delicate paper construction. The washi paper gently filters and scatters light, creating a luminous, ambient glow that eliminates harsh shadows. This quality makes the Akari Lamp the perfect choice for spaces where a serene and inviting atmosphere is desired, such as living rooms, bedrooms, or intimate dining areas.

Sculptural aesthetics

The sculptural aesthetics of the Akari Lamp stem from the meticulous production and thoughtful design. The bamboo ribs, forming an intricate framework, complement the organic folds of the washi paper. The resulting three-dimensional structure transforms the lamp into a visual masterpiece, making a statement even when not in use. This sculptural quality adds a touch of artistic elegance to any room, turning the Akari Lamp into a functional work of art.


The Akari series' versatility in design is a key aspect of its appeal. With various shapes and sizes available, from hanging pendants to table and floor lamps, the collection offers options to suit diverse spaces and interior styles. Whether employed as a singular statement piece or grouped for a more dynamic effect, the Akari Lamp adapts seamlessly to different design schemes, showcasing its adaptability and enhancing the overall aesthetic of a space.

Cultural connection

Designed by Isamu Noguchi, the Akari Lamp carries a profound cultural connection. Noguchi's Japanese heritage and his synthesis of Eastern and Western influences are manifested in the design. The use of washi paper, a traditional Japanese material, not only pays homage to production style but also enriches the lamp with cultural depth. The Akari Lamp becomes more than a lighting fixture; it becomes a bridge between artistic traditions, adding a layer of cultural significance to its already captivating design.

Harmony with nature

The Akari Lamp achieves a harmonious connection with nature through its choice of materials. The use of washi paper, derived from mulberry trees, and bamboo, a sustainable and renewable resource, underscores a commitment to natural elements. This eco-friendly approach not only aligns with contemporary design sensibilities but also fosters a sense of harmony with the environment, bringing a touch of nature indoors and contributing to a holistic and balanced living or working space.

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Journey to fame

The Vitra Akari Lamp achieved fame through its timeless design and the visionary work of its creator, Isamu Noguchi. Introduced in the 1950s, the lamp quickly garnered attention for its innovative use of materials, notably washi paper and bamboo. Its ability to emit a soft, diffused light while showcasing sculptural elegance resonated with designers and homeowners alike, contributing to its popularity. As mid-century modern aesthetics gained prominence, the Akari Lamp became an iconic representation of this design movement, featured in exhibitions and widely adopted in both residential and commercial spaces.

Did you know...?

The term "Akari" itself, meaning "light" in Japanese, reflects Noguchi's cultural influence in naming the series. This fusion of Eastern and Western elements not only adds a layer of depth to the lamp's design but also highlights Noguchi's ability to transcend cultural boundaries and create a globally appreciated masterpiece.

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