Guided by Scandinavian simplicity and the ever-changing character of the Nordic light. Northern’s products illuminate interiors throughout the world, and their commitment to quality, sustainability and design excellence travels with them.  

Designer, founder and CEO of Northern, Ove Rogne is a driving force in lighting design.  The Norwegian native has spent the last 13 years creating award winning products such as the Oslo Wood Lamp, and in 2008 teaming up with Trond Svendgård to co-design the Moo wall light.  His enthusiasm for Norwegian retro classics has seen the company go from strength to strength and in 2013, he also established the annual Northern Lighting Student Design Award.  An initiative to help design graduates gain industry experience. 

On February 5th 2018, Northern launched their new lifestyle range.  The new brand was developed with creative direction from designers Morten Skjærpe Knarrum and Jonas Norheim, the duo behind the Morten & Jonas design studio.  The debut collection includes statement-making designs, such as the exclusive desk by Yonoh crafted from smoked oak and perforated steel. Multifunctional products, such as the upbeat modular shelving and storage system from Rudi Wulff, and the sleeper sofa by Morten & Jonas.

We were lucky enough to speak with Ove about this, their name change and the current exhibition which is being held in Stockholm (5-9th February).  Here’s what he had to say;

Ove Rogne

Was it always part of the masterplan to introduce furniture into your brand, or has it developed naturally as part of the design process?

It was always our desired destination and dream to expand into a wider lifestyle brand. We just needed to build enough insight and experience first – and now the time for expansion feels just right. Let’s hope it is!

A change in name is always a big gamble for any company, what made you sure that 2018 was the year to take the plunge?

The name change to Northern simply feels right and fits well with the timing of the launch of our new and wider lifestyle collection. To be named also “Lighting” after this broadening of our collection would be a bit confusing we felt, even if we for sure will miss the old name. We promise to continue to develop, and excite hopefully, with new lighting designs also in the time to come still. So, we will not eliminate the content of our last for sure. Just a shorter name, and a not a total change since the first part continues.   

How did you go about picking designers you wished to work with on the new furniture range and can we expect any pieces from designers who have previously collaborated with Northern Lighting?

We handpicked and established a team of some, as we see it, really talented designers that includes 16 designers in total from seven different countries. Designers that we know can make nice objects, and that are a good mix of established ones and some more up and coming rookies. People that we thought could dare to challenge the status quo, resulting in a wide range of shapes, materials and production techniques.  

Your ‘Meet Northern’ exhibition which is being held in Stockholm between the 5-9th February and has been curated by set designer and interior architect Tekla Severin. Severin’s use of bright colours and bold shapes have made her work instantly recognisable, is this something that will be reflected in Northern’s debut collection?

The style of our collection hopefully plays well together Teklas fantastic expressions, and since we include pieces that have a broad variety of available textile choices and colour options they can be played with to create any setting different and unique. Bold shapes combined with beauty, functionality, natural materials and genuine craftsmanship are key features for what we present – and some pieces will definitely take the front stage while others blend more in and create more of a soothing backdrop maybe.    

Northern Lighting have given a new lease of life to Award winning designs from the 1950’s - Most Famously the Dokka pendant and Birdy Lamp. Will your new furniture collection follow suit, in taking influence from the past?

For the new launch, and at least for this year, we decided to stay 100% contemporary and not to include any reproductions from the past, and focus on designers and objects that reflect the times we live in, now. Some shapes and characters are still recognizable or timeless or have some references to the past, while others might have less. 

We very much look forward to the relaunch of the Brand Northern as well as release of Northern furniture collection, so finally we must ask; which is your favourite piece from the new collection and why?

Thanks. We do look forward to it as well. Right now, even if I like them all, I must say the Loud bar cabinet – first, because it really stands out and second, because it really fits my urgent need right now to calm down and get hold of a strong drink and relax a bit and mentally try to get prepared for the response to our launch

Brand launch Northern

We are very excited about this new range of products.  It pushes Northern into the wider lifestyle market and gives their customers a much larger selection of pieces to choose from.  We particularly like the way that Northern has kept its unique simplicity, with the range.  The Shelter desk by designer Yonoh, for example, is versatility and the simplicity make it a great fit for any type of environment.  The tabletop is bordered by perforated steel, forming a lightweight screen that wraps around the front and sides. The surface itself is crafted from a smoked oak veneer supported by steel legs.

Northern Shelter desk birdy wall light

Northern have always combined beauty with functionality and prefer natural materials and genuine craftsmanship.  With this new range they have captured this perfectly and it seamlessly fits with their existing range of lighting.   They see the interior as a flexible, creative space, and make multifunctional products that are unified in style, as well as in spirit.  We look forward to seeing what the future holds for these pioneers!

To veiw the Northern collection at Funktion Alley click here