Your Interview Rina Pradnya Pusthika
Introduce yourself (name, company, position, country) and tell us how you got into lighting design (including education/qualifications).
I am Rina Pradnya Pusthika, or usually people called me Rara. Since more than 7 years I lived and worked in Berlin until then beginning 2019, I decided to moved to back to my home country, Indonesia and to stay in Bali. In 2019 I founded my own lighting design consultancy STUDIO NIMMERSATT based in Bali. I got the inspiration of the name from a German child book ‘die Kleine Raupe nimmersatt’ (the very hungry caterpillar). The name Nimmersatt come from a German language which means always hungry. It is become my philosophy, to be always hungry of always hungry to meet new people, always hungry for adventure, always hungry to create and always hungry for a new experience
My background is architecture, but I always been fascinated about light and shadow play. My bachelor thesis in Architecture was about puppet shadow museum. My father used to be a puppet shadow master when he was young and we often watch the puppet shadow show on TV when I was a child. For me this very simple lighting technique with fire on the puppet shadow show bring the most romantic and fascinating element in lighting. After I graduated from architecture study I directly joined a lighting design office in Jakarta, Indonesia and since then I fall more in love with lighting world.
Tell us about your work – is there a specific type of project you like to work on or an area you specialise in and why?
When I was working in Singapore and Berlin, I used to worked on big scale projects like Offices, Metro stations, Resort Hotels, Museums and Exhibition booths. After few years of working on big scale projects, I realise my passion are more into a medium to a small projects, focusing in residential and retail or FnB industry. So currently in Bali with Studio Nimmersatt I am trying to pursuing my passion in residential and FnB lighting industry.
I always think that good design should be affordable or ‘reachable’ for everyone. I want to create the ideas that good lighting design could be applied even on a small projects, make it accessible to everyone to enjoy and being surround by good design. I believe that a good light can affect our everyday life.
Most of the time during the design process of one particular space, I always positioned my self to be in that space, and imagining my feeling towards the space and the atmosphere, will I have a good time, will I enjoying and feeling comfortable there?…
For me a good lighting design sometimes not always have to be memorable, but it should always creates a sense of comfort to the users.
What project are you most proud of and why?
The project I am probably most proud of is Villa Massilia, Bali. I feel particularly connected with this project, this is the first project I work on as STUDIO NIMMERSATT. After almost 10 years live outside Indonesia, I did not really know well on how the project being run and manage in here. Most of the lighting products that I used to specified back in Berlin, are not really affordable to be use in the projects.
After a couple of consultation with a friend who’s been working in the country for 10 years, I finally managed to handle the project, find the equivalent products. I kept the design of the lighting it very simple, by using 3 lighting components ‘ambiance lighting’, ‘accent lighting’ in combination with Bali tropical ‘decorative lighting’. The result of the project quite a surprise for me, since this project is a renovation project so there is a certain constraint before we start the design.
However, after all difficulties in the beginning of the process, I’m very proud of the result. The atmosphere at night was great and above my expectation.
My client, Ben and Alisa O’hare, was really happy with the results, and their kind words help Studio Nimmersatt to grow and getting another exciting projects.
What is the biggest challenge that you have overcome in your career?
The biggest challenge for me when I was working in Germany was the different language and the culture. It. Has not always been easy to be a young and woman designer in the male industry, let alone speak a completely different language. But, when I moved back to Indonesia, the culture was not an issue, as it is my home country. However the very same ideology applied in the construction world. Many are still thinking that it is belong to male counterpart. As a woman and a young designer I face a challenge to earn their respect and be taken seriously.
At the beginning it is very upsetting, but after few projects are running and done, I am finally starting to getting away with it.
The other challenge is to choose the good reliable and trusted products in here. The uncontrollable exposure of fast and unreliable lighting products from China make it difficult for a designer to convince client about using a trusted products, the main issue are the consumer purchasing power is relatively low and knowledge about lighting products and technology are limited.
Therefore, currently I am trying to gradually to educate or to communicate with clients / consumers about lighting and its technology.
How does light inspire you?
Since I was a kid, getting influence from my father who used to be a puppet shadow master, I always been fascinating in the beauty of light and shadow. There is a sense of sacred and mysteriousness about it.
Light and darkness is like yin and yang, there will be no light without darkness and the other way around. It is really enchanting to think, how something so magical and intangible yet also very technical and tangible.
I am still learning to mastering and understanding both quality of light in the tangible and intangible way, and I believe it takes time truly understand it, this is the triggered that kept me going and being involved in the lighting industry.
What is your message for other Women In Lighting?
Empowering and supporting each other in this industry, as we are all probably experience the same challenge as a woman. Creating a community where women could all shine with the help of each other.
Rina Pradnya Pusthika
“Empowering and supporting each other in this industry, as we are all probably experience the same challenge as a woman.
Creating a community where women could all shine with the help of each other. ”