SYSTEMALAB is derived from the Latin word systēma, in turn from Greek σύστημα systēma, "whole compounded of several parts or members, system", literary "composition“ and an abbreviation of laboratory. It is a studio for experimental aesthetics within the field of Design.
Systemalab owes its existence to the deep interest and research on pattern and form that stems from the common architectural background of the two co-founders, Thomas Vietzke and Sofia Daniilidou. In fact architecture provides a strong foundation for the creation of forms that range from archetypical to purely experimental and organic. From big scale objects, such as buildings, to small scale ones, such as jewelry pieces. The same patterns can co exist in worlds that are ostensibly unrelated, but unavoidably are brought together when the creation process starts. The logic of construction is imbedded in the design process.
The singularity of the rings stands also on the employment of digital tools for their design, after the first ‘impressions’ and sketches which are communicated by hand drawings. The digital tools give a vast freedom for investigation on forms, patterns, surfaces. Mathematical rules are utilized in order to populate surfaces with patterns. The precision of the computer generated model attributes to the jewelry a unique impeccable esthetic.
The production of the pieces is a field of endless investigation. From 3d printing of prototypes in Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) to 3d wax plotting and moulds, where the silver is poured. Further manual post production is taking place for obtaining polished silver or oxidized surface, yellow or pink gold plated and in some cases introduction of stones. Lately the process of silver electroforming is being tested and evaluated. Part of our aspiration, for a ‘one step’ design to production, is to employ in the near future Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS).
What intrigued Sofia Daniilidou and Thomas Vietzke to the jewelry field is the immediacy of the finished product, the close relation of the object to the body, the unquestionable relation to architecture and the possibility to bring the form to its extremes, experiment with materials and production methods.
Although the above mentioned reasons that pushed Systemalab to the ‘adornment’ field, the narrative of this adventure would only start in a Greek island. The idyllic scenery brimful of nature and architecture, pattern and form, material and structure, colors and shades, was a bottomless source of ideas. The first ring sketches were based on patterns found on small constructions that are used for sheltering pigeons (peristerionas) that one can encounter in many Cycladic islands. Beautiful craftsmanship and detail that is overwhelming for such a small building with such a peculiar function. A ‘jewelry’ in the landscape. The triangular pattern was ‘reinvented’, this time to adorn objects that can be worn. Scale and materiality had to be thought in a different way.
That was only the beginning. Organic forms are a constant field of inspiration and their fluidity can lead to the creation of objects, which are effortlessly related to the curves of the human body.