SILVERBACK – connecting architecture and light

The KiBiSi design group and Louis Poulsen are launching a different interpretation of the adaptation of lighting for architecture.

Morphing is a graphic technique whereby a picture makes a transition into another picture through a smooth movement.


The KiBiSi design group trio, Jens Martin Skibsted, Lars Larsen and Bjarke Ingels, have reinterpreted wall and ceiling lighting, drawing on the morphing design concept. In cooperation with Louis Poulsen, the result is the exciting new product –Silverback – now ready to be launched around the world.


No matter how much priority architects give to natural lighting in buildings, it is necessary to supplement this with artificial light to optimize working conditions and comfort for humans. This is the major challenge in all building projects and Louis Poulsen has worked with architects for years, striving to create a harmonic synergy between architecture and lighting.


Silverback is an example of a very innovative way of creating cohesion between spatial elements and light.


Silverback is a super minimalistic fixture. At first glance it may look familiar, but a closer look reveals it as the result of innovation.


Silverback has a soft harmonic shape which unites the silver coloured half with the opal white diffuser. A simple decorative line marks the join and highlights the circular shape in a distinct manner. A visual detail which is retained whether the light is on or off.


The silver effect and the depth of perception of the material is achieved by metal-lising the inner surface of one half of the shade. Not only does this conceal the light source, it also reflects the mounting surface and permits a certain amount of light to pass through, thereby illuminating the surface behind the product with a decorative halo. The mirror effect is retained even when the light is on, drawing the mounting surface into the fixture and abolishing the visual boundary between the product and wall or ceiling.


This effect offers a unique experience in relation to all aspects of the mounting surface – texture, colour or material. It simply has unlimited applications.

The rear half of Silverback also appears slightly transparent, giving the product a sense of lightness.

The opal diffuser provides soft and comfortable illumination of the space around the fixture and the simplistic design makes the fixture ideal for either solo placement or repetitive installations. The fixture has a discreet presence in every type of project, without losing its identity.


A fluorescent tube version of SILVERBACK is being launched in April and a LED version ready for autumn.


Louis Poulsen is looking forward to the launch with excitement. “It is a different way of integrating light and architecture. In the past we have had a major focus on the simplicity of design offering many possibilities, but SILVERBACK represents new ways of integrating architectural elements with the fixture itself,” notes Flemming Hald, Product and Design Director at Louis Poulsen.

KiBiSi is one of the most influential design groups in Scandinavia today, and works with a broad range of disciplines, designing everything from furniture and house-hold appliances to bicycles and aeroplanes. KiBiSi was founded in Copenhagen by Lars Larsen, Bjarke Ingels Group and Jens Martin Skibsted. Each partner contributes ideas and expertise from their special interest areas, giving KiBiSi valuable knowl-edge about architecture, design, furniture, electronics and contemporary culture and lifestyle.


Leave a Reply