“Atelier Stōbben specializes in modern lighting inspired by minimalism, Mennonite traditions and generations of self-sufficiency. I design with long-lasting, raw materials in mind, such as hardwood, metal and concrete. After working in the film industry for over a decade as a filmmaker and video editor, I realized I wanted to work more with my hands.
My collections often have titles in Low German, a nod to the language my family spoke growing up in the Old Colony Mennonite communities in Chihuahua, Mexico. ‘Stobben’ means stump in Low German, inspired by stumps I saw drying outside my parents’ house in southwestern Alberta. That turned into my first collection, and was the catalyst for launching my business.
This collection of wall lamps is inspired by the shapes, pendulums and weights of Mennonite wall clocks, originally quite ornately painted and made out of steel and brass. These clocks embody an inherent sense of home and place, so with this in mind, this collection has a focus on mental health and well-being. Circadian lighting tells time as the light changes intensity and colour throughout the day, thus limiting the effect electric light has on human circadian rhythm. An abstract clock element also allows users to choose between a 24-hr and a traditional 12-hr clock. Users will be able to control the lighting either through touch, such as running their hands through hanging brass chains, through a switch or through a smartphone app to be developed in the future.
There are great stories behind these clocks and their importance to the families who used them. This became even more important to me, as I found out that my great grandparents had one featured prominently in their home in their Old Order Mennonite community (the Manitoba colony, hence the name) in Chihuahua, Mexico during the 1940s and 50s.”