curve ID's 'black hole lamp' devours light with the flick of a switch

curve ID's 'black hole lamp' devours light with the flick of a switch


designers at new york consultancy and design firm curve ID have completed their production of a lamp that allows you to enjoy the spectacle of  a black hole from the safety of your living room. while switched on, the light is dispersed across a fabric disk, but drawing the lamp’s handle backwards pulls the fabric of the lamp in on itself, creating a tunnel from which it cannot escape — just like how a black hole eats a star.

curve ID black hole lampdrawing the handle backwards pull the fabric of the light in on itself



the aptly named ‘black hole lamp’ was designed by dario narvaez and anthony baxter, and despite having worked on automotive type lighting before the project represented a step in a new direction for curve ID. ‘the fully illuminated disc represents a living star’, explains the team. ‘as the disc is stretched backwards, the light dims just like the process of a dying star until it no longer emits light and is devoured by a black hole.’ the role of the user was key to the team’s process: the centre of the lamp reads, ‘black hole’, the handle reads ‘god’. ‘we wanted to achieve an aesthetically pleasing piece that was also functional and interactive, where the user plays a key role in the experience of the product — we want the user to be part of the design and make them feel like they have the power to transform light.’

curve ID black hole lampthe project represented a step in a new direction for curve ID



achieving this wasn’t easy. curve ID had to marry the idea of transforming the materials into a certain shape with the act of dimming the light. after trying many techniques, both technical and mechanical, ‘in the end it was a combination of the two that gave us the right effect; dimming the light as the user pulls it and then turns it off. we also had to coordinate the distance with the intensity of light. and finally, another challenge was finding the right materials. we needed materials that could diffuse the light evenly, and stretch to the required shape all while maintaining their properties.’

curve ID black hole lamp
the centre of the lamp reads ‘black hole’, the handle: ‘god’


the team had to marry the idea of transforming the shape with the dimming of the light

curve ID black hole lamp
in the ‘on’ position the reflective disc of material is fully illuminated



the role of the user was a key consideration in the design

the team wanted the act of turning the light on and off to be more than a simple flick of a switch

the user has the power to literally transform light

in production, the team needed to find a material that would diffuse the light evenly

a black hole draws in light and matter by altering the fabric of space



project info:


dimensions: height 1450mm, base width 675mm, base length 715mm. shade diameter 600mm.
materials: stainless steel rod ½” – 3/8”, latex and textile disc, stainless steel frame, led strip.
manufacturing processes: metal fabrication and welding, stretched latex + fabric, cnc machining and cutting, electrical wiring and programming
metal fabrication: benjamin duarte
electronics & programming: eddy viana, mark breneman, marc vivant
electronics consulting: pete althoff
prototype consulting: ronald ondrey
special thanks: the curve ID team, alberto mantilla, carlos gonzalez, nicole fox, annika hagen



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: peter corboy | designboom

  • Wow! This is beautiful light.
    I had hard time to taken picture of reflective materials. This lighting unit will helps.

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