Pieke Bergmans' blown-plastic VAPOR lighting "grows like a plant or animal"

Dezeen and MINI World Tour: Amsterdam designer Pieke Bergmans explains that she used a process similar to glass blowing to create the plastic lighting she exhibited during Dutch Design Week 2013 in Eindhoven.

Vapor by Pieke Bergmans

Showcased amongst the pipes in a former pump house in Eindhoven, Bergmans exhibited two groups of objects as part of her VAPOR collection, which she created by heating and rapidly inflating PVC plastic.

Vapor by Pieke Bergmans

Swaying, ethereal shapes were hung in the main room, which Bergmans made by blowing air into the plastic until it stretched into an extremely thin, translucent tube at one end.

"The material is solid and somehow it fades away almost into nothingness," she explains. "It dissolves like a gas. It's very thin plastic at the ends, but on the top it's quite solid."

Vapor by Pieke Bergmans

A second installation in the basement of the pump house consisted of a series of twisted, rippled pipes.

Vapor by Pieke Bergmans

"The shapes are really organic, they grow like a plant or an animal," she says. "That is something I really love, because I don't like to design being very precise. I actually prefer that shapes grow into their natural environments."

She continues: "So this plastic is actually grown. The only thing I decide is to add more or less air into it, or maybe add a few colours, or maybe add more material."

Vapor by Pieke Bergmans

Bergmans explains that the pieces she exhibited at Dutch Design Week were the result of many different experiments.

"I'm very free and experimental and I try to understand the boundaries [of a production process]," she explains. "I will make things with lots of air and it will explode, maybe. After lots of experiments I know the limits; I know the edges. And actually, the edges are most of the time the nicest."

Pieke Bergmans portrait
Pieke Bergmans. Copyright: Dezeen

We drove around Eindhoven in our MINI Cooper S Paceman. The music in the movie is a track called Family Music by Eindhoven-based hip hop producer Y'Skid.

You can listen to more music by Y'Skid on Dezeen Music Project and watch more of our Dezeen and MINI World Tour movies here.

Dezeen and MINI World Tour: Eindhoven
Our MINI Paceman in Eindhoven