Mostlikely Lights Heads


By Tanya Silverman

Donkey Large do it yourself lampshade. Photo courtesy of mostlikelyShop.

Beyond those fleeting thought bubbles floating over comic book characters, real ideas actually can come in the physical form of a light bulb.

That’s what happened to mostlikely, a Viennese agency. After their boxy donkey mask got rejected by a theater crew they designed it for, they later picked the paper head up, cut a hole in it, and perched it on a bulb. The basis for a line of paper lampshades was born.

Mostlikely is comprised of five men who met at architecture school in Vienna. They share a studio in the city where they collaborate periodically, meshing their masteries of architecture, computer graphics, design, and sound. Two of their members, Maik Perfahl and Wolfgang List, design the sculptures listed on the group’s compelling Etsy Account, mostlikelyShop.

The lampshades–which List deems as an effort to revive a bygone decorative sense of “extraordinary flair” into the boring ambiance of contemporary European apartments–are shaped like owls, cats, foxes, rabbits, and even hands doing the “rock on” gesture. List considers the models to be “very stylish and somehow funny.”

Silver Cat Small pendant. Photo courtesy of mostlikelyShop.

The lampshades start out as complex 3D computer models that are transformed into flat plans and printed on heavy paper. Customers who order the models then cut the out paper parts which they fold and glue together themselves to construct the finished piece. The DIY assembly process, List explains, duly helps people connect to their lampshades while keeping international shipping rates low.

Mostlikely also produces a line of wire pendants that are miniature skeletal models of the lampshades. These metallic animal heads are created through 3D printing methods as well. Wax molds are printed out in Belgium, and then silver is poured in to these casts.

Besides crafting their products, mostlikely organizes interactive “crowdconstructing” workshops that spontaneously manifest large-scale installations.

“Each sculpture is constructed of around 300 single parts and it is like putting together a complex puzzle, or working like ants on something big,” describes List.

The Loop Paper Structure. Photo courtesy of mostlikelyShop.

One result is the massive Loop, a sculptural composition of curving, cubistic paper pieces that colossally connect into a spiral.

Looking forth, the men at mostlikely have plans to present their creations at international exhibits, some of which are in Europe, and others as far away as Cape Town, South Africa. By engaging their luminescent heads in Vienna, mostlikely has found an innovative way to light up the world.