BERTRAND BALAS

Bertrand Balas designed his lamp Here Comes the Sun, in 1970. If you look closely; you can either see the sun rising or the sun sets.

THE STORY

In an interview, Bertrand Balas tells his story:
“As a matter of fact, there isn’t much I can say; I started my professional life in 1962 as a freelancer, after having done a few months as an apprentice in a workshop in Paris trying to get back into the work place after thirty six months of military service, partly in Algeria. I very quickly went back to Toulouse, as I did not enjoy life in Paris which did not agree with me for various reasons: the stress, the superficiality of relationships with people, the transport, finally a heap of things which made me find my city Toulouse with pleasure.

I worked hard both with architects and decorators in the homes of rich business owners. In ’65, during a trip with an important distributor of lighting material, I came in contact with the company Raak. It was then fundamental in launching my capabilities as a designer, since the director of this company had said that if we had (we were two architects) some project in this field he would be quite happy to work with us providing this came within the spirit of his company.

During 2-3 years this grew in my spirit and I started to plan some projects. I was anxious when I sent them, as young man under thirty, to Mr. Lockhorn, the company’s executive, who at my surprise accepted one! Wow! I then actively started to bring various objects to the point, one of which the current “Here comes the sun” which was created in two diameters as well as three other models. Five of my objects were accepted. After this my work as an architect totally took over the time I had available and I no longer had the freedom of spirit to create in this field of design.

Because one must have the spirit free of all usual constraints of an agency of architecture to permit it to gallop in spaces where it loses itself, to imagine shapes, volumes, colours and matters and most of all to allow oneself to derive in time, stretched time, without precise obligations, and to try to formalise something which, in this way, appears. Sometimes at one’s own surprise. Then a long time afterwards, when on retirement, I had directed my life towards other activities, I was brutally woken up by a telephone call from Frédéric Winkler who was interested in what was due to become “Here comes the sun” and all of a sudden my career of creator of lighting objects started up again. For my very good luck.”

HERE COMES
THE SUN

In August 1970 Bertrand Balas designed the lamp Here Comes the Sun. At the same time as Bertrand Balas was designing his lamp, in the Spring of 1969, the Beatles were having difficulties; tension was running high and relations between the members distinctly frosty. All of which prompted George Harrison to write ‘Here comes the sun’. After the cold and icy winter, it is always good to feel the first rays of sunshine.

ANDERSEN & VOLL