Heike Buchfelder began experimenting with feathers in the early 2000s. The Berlin architect was fascinated by the multifaceted nature of this material and its almost inexhaustible wealth of meaning. In her archaic-looking objects, she revealed the tensions inherent in this material: hard and soft, alive and ephemeral, simple and exotic. For her first solo exhibition, she designed an installation with illuminated feathered creatures, which enjoyed a great positive response and led to the founding of her design label pluma cubic in 2005.
Since then, pluma cubic has been synonymous with idiosyncratic light objects that capture the beauty of this natural material in sculptural forms.
The pluma cubic collection includes small handmade series and unique pieces. Depending on the model, anywhere between 250 and 4000 specially selected goose and rooster feathers are individually pierced through the cotton covering of the lampshades – also designed by pluma cubic – by hand in a slow, meditative process. The textile surface separates the morbid, spiny quills on one side from the beautiful, delicate plumes of feathers on the other, with the interwoven placement of the feathers creating a flower-like shape. The result is opulent light fixtures with a sensual presence.
pluma cubic only uses feathers from domestic geese and chickens that are a by-product of food production and are recycled and processed by the decorative feather industry. They are cleaned according to veterinary standards and sorted by hand.
The lights are manufactured by carefully chosen craft workshops in the Berlin area. Due to the long-term relationship with these production facilities, pluma cubic is able to offer bespoke items. This also includes tailored solutions for the electrical fittings. Clients include private individuals and collectors as well as restaurants and hotels.
Heike Buchfelder studied architecture at Berlin University of the Arts and the Oslo School of Architecture and Design. In addition to feather lights, Buchfelder has also created paper and metal objects in recent years. She is currently experimenting with glass surface finishes.
Her works are regularly presented in exhibitions. Recent venues include the Gewerbemuseum, Winterthur; Selected, Graz; MARTa, Herford; the Metropolitan Design Center, Bueno Aires; and the MOSS Gallery, New York. Recent fairs include the Salone del Mobile in Milan; the ICFF in New York; and design festivals in Paris, London, Tokyo and Berlin.
In 2021, she founded the collective MATTER of COURSE together with eleven other Berlin-based designers, which is driven by the idea of using unique objects and work at the intersection of design, craft, art and industry to generate cultural value. As a creative community, MATTER of COURSE is committed to the conscious use of materials, high-quality workmanship and contemporary design on a local and international level. More information can be found here: MATTERofCOURSE
Friends Space, BALANCING ACTS, curated by Anava, Berlin/ FeldbuschWiesnerRudolph Gallery, Creative intersections between Sculpture and Design, Berlin/ Museum of Arts and Crafts, Federn – wärmen, verführen, fliegen Multifunctionality of the feather and its current meaning in design, art and pop culture, Winterthur/ Aptm, German design, what is that?, Berlin/ Brunnen190, Berlin/ SELECTED GRAZ Out of the frame, Neue Galerie, Graz/ Palazzo Michiel, Venice Design, Venedig/ ICFF New York + Deutscher Pavillon at Beijing Design Week Handmade in Germany World Tour/ Biennale Interieur, THE WALL- Nieuwe German Gestaltung #004, Kortrijk curated by Max Borka/ Diet Gallery, AUS BERLIN, Design Miami District, Miami/ Ventura Lambrate + Design Festival Berlin INSTANT STORIES BERLIN, Berlin, Milan/ IMM Cologne, THE BLACK BATH Living Spaces, Cologne/ Gallery Yasmine Benhadj-Djiali, OFF CUT, Berlin/ Seoul Design Fair, Overseas Design, Seoul/ Metropolitan Design Center, Material Issues, Buenos Aires/ MARTa Museum, Nullpunkt. Nieuwe German Gestaltung, curated by Max Borka, Herford/ Temporäre Kunsthalle Berlin, 20 Jahre Kreativmetropole Berlin, Berlin/ Made in Berlin at Salone del Mobile, Milan and Berlin Design Week/ Draywalk Gallery, London/ Shanghai Int. Creative Industry Week (SICIW), Creative Spree, Shanghai/ RED Moscow, Best of Berlin, Moskow/ MOSS Gallery, New York/ ARTORT, Köln