A Dawn for Leonia





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Published on Jun 7, 2015


“The city of Leonia refashions itself every day: every morning the people wake between fresh sheets, wash with just‐unwrapped cakes of soap, wear brand‐new clothing, take from the latest model refrigerator still unopened tins, listening to the last‐minute jingles from the most up‐to‐date radio.
On the sidewalks, encased in spotless plastic bags, the remains of yesterday's Leonia await the garbage truck. Not only squeezed tubes of toothpaste, blown‐out light bulbs, newspapers, containers, wrappings, but also boilers, encyclopedias, pianos, porcelain dinner services.
It is not so much by the things that each day are manufactured, sold, bought, that you can measure Leonia's opulence, but rather by the things that each day are thrown out to make room for the new.
So you begin to wonder if Leonia's true passion is really, as they say, the enjoyment of new things, and not, instead, the joy of expelling, discarding, cleansing itself of a recurrent impurity. The fact is that street cleaners are welcomed like angels.”

― Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities


Accepting the unpredictability of the future and certain amount of failure, we imagine a dystopian future, a world in which all natural resources have been depleted from the excess of production of both manufactured goods and waste provoked by the excess of consumerism that centuries of industrialization have provoked.
In such future, exhausted of raw materials, there is no more production of plastic, metals, fuel, industrial chemical or pharmaceutical .Much of the population survives on re‐processed objects, found objects and hybrids made from both.
Memories are also constructs, for many, sunny skies, rain forests, wild animals, sunsets, are only a description available through the elders’ anecdotes who can still remember it.
“A Dawn for Leonia” is an interpretation from the memory of a future where sunrises are no longer.


Leonia’s inspiration came from the desire to give disposable beer kegs a second life as luminaires for a microbrewery. The name was inspired by one of the Invisible Cities from Italo Calvino’s celebrated eponymous novel.
The luminaire’s two main components are the disposable beer keg shades and the 6w LED lamp’s milled aluminum housings which also act as heat‐sinks. Separating the two components to allow for the aluminum housings to be utilized on their own or with other shade options was an important part of the design approach as it offered multiple options, combinations and finishes.

Design by SUMO Project
Photographs by: Aaron Finbow
Music by NAVI


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