© michiel cornelissen ontwerp 2009-2013 | general conditions michiel cornelissen ontwerp

From back when I first joined a capoeira group, I’ve been fascinated by the simple, elegant shape and construction of the traditional Afro-Brazilian caxixi instrument - usually made from a type of rattan, a piece of gourd and plant seeds to create a rattling sound. Also years ago, I had this idea that the basic form could work well as a lamp; but for various reasons, I never got around to creating a prototype for it.

Then, a little while ago, I found out that our friend Cabral Elastico, a capoeirista and craftsman from Recife, Brazil, was making some really nice variations of the caxixi; and while we were planning our visit in 2011, it seemed that the time had finally come for this design. Based on a product I’d previously purchased from Cabral, I created 3d-printed parts to replace the gourd piece, in order to position a replaceable light bulb. I also made a weaving mould to be able to create a slightly more controlled form.

Some days after our arrival, Cabral dropped by with his materials and we created the KXX light. I hadn’t had any contact with him while I was designing the lower parts of the lamp and the weaving mould, so it was exciting to see that everything turned out better even than I’d hoped. The woven material gives a really nice quality to the light, with both energy-saving lamps and traditional bulbs. The light looks great when standing on the floor, but also works well when hanging from a hook on the wall; and, as it’s easy to move around, it’s just a practical light to have around.

KXX is not yet available for sale or wholesale; I only have a few prototypes at the moment, which are quite expensive due to the 3d-printed parts I’m using. I’m hoping be able to work with a fairtrade/design brand to bring this product to retail channels in the near future; let me know if you’re interested in this.

Cabral can be contacted here (Portuguese only).


hanging/standing/walking light