Belmond British Pullman: Cygnus Carriage

Belmond has revealed an exclusive cinematic design partnership with acclaimed filmmaker Wes Anderson.

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Belmond British Pullman: Cygnus Carriage

Interior Designer

Wes Anderson

Fittings Supplied

Bespoke table lights.

Paying tribute to both the golden age of cinema and travel, Wes Anderson has reimagined the Cygnus carriage of the British Pullman.

Photography Credit

Year

2021

Wes Anderson has a deep-rooted love of trains and a passion for craftsmanship. Trains with luxury interiors quite often play a significant role in his films and bring to life his vision of perfect symmetry that defines his artistic direction.

Working with Belmond on their Cygnus carriage to realise the unique vision of Wes Anderson was an opportunity at which we jumped. As huge admirers of the director's work, it was fantastic to collaborate with Belmond's team and turn their inspirational ideas into an elegant table light that perfectly complemented his reimaged vintage scheme for the train's interior.

The ideas and details for the Cygnus carriage are visually sympathetic with several of the films that Wes Anderson has directed; The Darjeeling Limited and The Grand Budapest Hotel both use trains as a context for the story and The French Dispatch for the era and exquisite styling. He has carefully balanced the preservation of the historical interior of the British Pullman Cygnus carriage with a modern interpretation of design. The carriage has his signature symmetrical lines, unique colour pallets and art nouveau style.

Our brief was to create and develop a light for the individual dining tables that encapsulated all the material and visual inspirations sourced for the project. Our starting point was to create sketches that presented these ideas and look at different materials that aligned with the artistic direction applied to the carriage.

 

We also had to consider the practicalities of designing a light that was robust and stable enough for the movement within a train carriage and easy to maintain whilst remaining a stylish focal point of the table setting.

 

Fine blown reeded glass was considered for the shade, as was richly veined alabaster – both discarded for practical and aesthetic reasons. The brief intended to keep the purity of the light output in juxtaposition to the ornate deco style detailing of the metalwork, so a reeded detail matt porcelain shade was deemed the perfect material to complement the nickel-plated base that will tarnish naturally over time.

 

The turned parts that detail the fitting were created in our machining workshop and then electroplated with nickel as it has a softer appearance. The warm ambient light that the Porcelain shade casts is consistent with the illumination of other lamps that Belmond always specify in their luxury Pullman train carriages and creates a flattering light for diners and a warm, inviting interior.



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