Designing with OLEDs: An Interview with Meyda Lighting

November 18, 2020

Meyda Lighting is America’s premier manufacturer and importer of Decorative, Custom and Tiffany Lighting based in Yorkville, New York. For more than 45 years, Meyda has been making the world more beautiful with luxurious decorative lighting. The company became an official OLEDWorks Design and Project Partner in 2019. We sat down with Max Cohen, Director of Hospitality Marketing and grandson of Meyer and Ida Cohen, founders of Meyda Lighting, to talk about Meyda’s experience designing with OLED lighting.

How did you get started in the lighting industry?

Meyda was founded when Meyer Cohen was asked by his wife Ida, to build a stained glass window in their kitchen so they wouldn’t have to view the vintage cars in their neighbor’s driveway. Meyer was a master craftsman and inventor, his wife Ida, was a natural business woman – together they combined their names to form the Meyda Lighting Brand we know today. What began as a hobby evolved into America’s Premier decorative lighting manufacturing and importing company. Today Meyda continues to operate as a family-run business, with the Cohens’ son, Robert, at the helm and grandsons Chester, Max and Ben by his side. The company was founded on a do-it-yourself philosophy. This spirit has led the company’s strategy of in-sourcing technology, absorbing competitors and buying strategic vendors. The Meyda family of Lighting companies has evolved and is based in the 180,000 square-foot headquarters and manufacturing facility in Yorkville, New York. We have always been at the forefront of innovation, pioneering the latest trends and technology.

Kossar Installation by Meyda Lighting

An installation of the Meyda OLED fixture Kossar in a NYC dentist’s office

What first sparked your interest around OLED lighting?

In 2015, we began to learn about OLEDs from trade publications and by monitoring the industry closely. Once we heard about the emergence of OLED technology, we conducted extensive research to see how we can incorporate this new light source into our custom lighting fixtures. It was extremely important that we garnered extensive knowledge about the features of nanotechnology and its lighting applications so that we can manufacture ultra-thin modern fixtures with integrated OLEDs. In addition, we needed to educate our customers and reps so they can better understand this cutting edge technology and its many uses.

As an industry leader, we continue to build on our nearly 50 years of manufacturing and engineering expertise. We have the ability to integrate OLEDs into our artisan-crafted luminaires to deliver glare-free light and visual comfort in residential, office and hospitality settings. As OLEDs become more sought-after by designers, we are beginning to receive a great number of requests for these types of fixtures.

Helix, by Meyda Lighting

The Helix OLED chandelier by Meyda Lighting

What do you see as the biggest opportunity for OLED lighting in terms of application?

Commercial and hospitality applications are prime spaces for OLED lighting fixtures. Having soft beautiful light in these types of settings is certainly a great way to make people feel comfortable and at ease. Lighting professionals who are familiar with OLED lighting will appreciate the space even more, knowing that each detail of the design was carefully calculated and thought through. OLED panels are paper thin and designers love the fact that they can be configured into a wide array of luminaires.

What are the biggest obstacles in the way of greater OLED adoption in these markets?

The biggest obstacle is the design of the panels and having to work within the parameters of the product. Right now, the OLED itself is something that you are looking directly at and has to be incorporated into the design and aesthetic of the fixture. Working with the rigid shapes, such as squares, rectangles, circles, can make it more challenging for designers. If OLED offered more shape options, and if there were more flexible offerings like the OLEDWorks Wave panels, I think that would help move OLED lighting forward more quickly.

To learn more about Meyda Lighting visit our Partner Network.