By Marc de Groot

The bespoke lighting brand By Marc de Groot was founded in 1995 and expanded in 2006 when de Groot moved the eponymous manufacturing firm to a larger space in a historical building in Amsterdam. The firm is known for drawing inspiration from nature and history, and creating fixtures using mathematical theories and fractal patterns. With many of its designs, the company laser-cuts aluminum components that are fastened or wrapped into shapes to form complex constellations.

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By Marc de Groot

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By Marc de Groot

The lighting brand By Marc de Groot has become known for the cleverness de Groot, the owner and principal designer, puts into his designs. He founded the bespoke manufacturing firm in 1995, expanding the factory and moving it to a larger space in a historical building in Amsterdam in 2006. When he designs, de Groot draws inspiration from nature and history, and creates fixtures using mathematical theories and fractal patterns. Many of the creations could be considered metal origami, though a certain delicacy is evoked by the term and the machining process the manufacturer employs give its light fixtures much more muscle than their paper counterparts.

Before the laser-cut components are fastened or wrapped into shapes to form complex constellations, the designer puts tremendous effort into mining history for inspiration and researching the right materials for each design. De Groot notes that the idea of attempting to create beauty through mathematical calculations is not a new one. As far back in time as Leonardo da Vinci, artists and scientists have tried to decode the secret of harmonious composition, da Vinci’s focus his “Golden Ratio.” De Groot follows in his footsteps with fixtures like Helix, a geometric lamp that oozes light through the minute gaps between each of the plates that make up the shade.

These characteristics make the work of this brand both edgy and timeless, a challenging balance to strike. The fascinating union of the scientific and the creative is a headspace where de Groot is quite comfortable. “The design process is a path, a quest, to the unknown,” he says. “And to be able to translate that into forms is my focus. A good design occurs when everything fits, when there is no right or wrong. That’s when I know it’s finished.” In his eyes, designs can be familiar, but they must also be liberating in some way. When he achieves this, de Groot knows he has satisfied his creative process.

Proving his philosophies are sound, he has won a number of awards for his firm, including 100% Design Rotterdam and Netherlands’ Design District awards. Illustrating the hallmark of a visionary product designer and manufacturer, de Groot is keen to discover those moments when an equal balance between functionality and quality meet. His mind is made up to never sacrifice the functional aspects of a light fixture to aesthetics while concentrating on stylistic considerations as well. “If you nail the mathematical elements in a design,” says de Groot, “natural beauty follows.”