In Australia you need four things to be considered a town: a phone box, a letterbox, a cash machine (it used to be a bank office) and a pub. Parachilna is one of the last towns before entering the Australian desert north of Adelaide. And those four things are all that Parachilna has today. It’s on a railway line that used to connect with the old Ghan line that crosses Australia from North (Darwin) to South (Adelaide). The Ghan was an impressive work of the time and even today is an amazing machine powerful enough to run through 3.000 km of desert. The name of the line comes from the Afghan camel drivers that were brought to Australia to help explore the unknown desert for the first time, in the 19th century. Today no train stops over but the Parachilna old train station remains. The picture above shows two people waiting for a train that never stops. But they don’t despair and one day that train, against all the logical odds, stops. It’s a small tribute to faith and passion. And to those who, mighty like the Ghan, pick up passionate passengers like the two folks in the picture. Because all deserts can be crossed. Because all trains stop even if there is no railway station. Because you do not need much to build up a town or your own dreams. Because stars always shine brighter in the desert. After many years of successful highs and occasional lows in the lighting sector, we decided to create PARACHILNA. Dedicated to decorative lighting, PARACHILNA was born from our love of luxury. For us, luxury is about the integrity of the design, the quality of the materials and the artisanal craftsmanship that creates it. Preserving the skills and knowledge of the few remaining metalsmiths, glass blowers, ceramicists and other skilled craftsmen that still remain in Europe and, we hope, in other parts of the world. We trust that we will find kindred spirits in our pursuit of these skills in every city of the five continents; our passion is to work with designers from every corner of the globe.
Stephen Burks is both a traveler and a designer. For over a decade, Stephen Burks has dedicated his work to building a bridge between authentic craft traditions, industrial manufacturing, and contemporary design. Since 2005, Burks has consulted with nonprofits including Aid to Artisans, the Clinton Global Initiative, Design Network Africa, Artesanias de Colombia and the Nature Conservancy, uniting the artisan, the designer, and global brands in a triangle of immersive development. With his New York–based studio, Stephen Burks Man Made, Burks has produced innovative products, furniture, lighting, and exhibitions for a range of international clients including B&B Italia, Boffi, Cappellini, Dedar, Dedon, Harry Winston, Missoni, Moroso, Parachilna, Roche Bobois and Swarovski. Burks has exhibited at the Studio Museum in Harlem and the Museum of Arts and Design, as well as receiving numerous accolades including the Illinois Institute of Technology Alumni Professional Achievement Award, the Brooklyn Museum Young Modernist Award, the Architektur & Wohnen Audi Mentor Prize and the 2008 United States Artists Architecture & Design Target Fellowship Grant. Stephen Burks is the 2015 Cooper Hewitt National Design Award winner in Product Design.