1920s

La lampe Gras: more colours, more formats

Lampe Gras table light 205 blue To their existing colour range, DCW, who are re-editing La Lampe Gras have added two more colours: a blue and a yellow.

Not just any blue or yellow, though! Just as the red is a particular red that is used for the ground underneath gold leaf, the yellow is "...the colour of machine oil" and the blue (see above) is  "...a deep blue, reminiscent of that used in carbon paper."

Here is the full range of colours and finishes at the moment.

Lampe Gras colours

Note that they can sometimes be mixed -- the structure in one colour or finish, and the shade and base in another. See exactly what by downloading  the PDF of the catalogue from here.

The excitement about this classic light, designed in 1921 by Bernard-Albin Gras, is partly based on its functionality. It does what it does, which is to be task light, supremely well. And partly because form follows function: it looks like what it looks like because that is how it needs to be made, not because it was "designed".

The new formats demonstrate this very well. For example, the wall light no. 216:

Lampe Gras wall light 216 set

Lampe Gras wall light 216

and the wall light no. 303:

Lampe Gras wall light 303 set

Lampe Gras wall light 303

Finally, there is a new table light that can be attached either by a clamp, or directly to the table/desk:

Lampe Gras table light 211 311

Lampe Gras table light 211

Lampe Gras table light 211  set

This means that the Lampe Gras collection now comprises:

3 x table lights

2 x "architects' lights -- i.e. these table lights with a long reach that fix to the table -- that are so good they will make the Tolomeo blush, DCW say!

1 x floor light

9 x wall lights, articulated in various ways, and

1 x pendant.

Enough for every possible use -- why would one specify any other light?!

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The Bauhaus: DMB30 by Marianne Brandt from Tecnolumen

DMB30 ceiling light by Marianne Brandt from Tecnolumen Marianne Brandt was one of the most prolific designers of lights at the Bauhaus which, like Wilhelm Wagenfeld, she joined in 1924 to study under László Moholy-Nagy.

This ceiling light, DMB30, is one of series that she designed for Schwintzer & Gräfe, who launched them in their catalogue for the 1928/29 season. It is quite large, at Ø60cm. It is such a cliché to say that it could have been designed yesterday, but it is useful to be reminded how timeless such a design is. It is therefore highly suitable for any project where the interior is intended to last, and not feel outdated during its life.

Other lights of hers are so much part of the current language of lights that it is as if they have always been around -- that no-one actually created them. A good example is HMB25, a metal rise'n'fall:

hmb25 by marianne brandt from tecnolumen

or DMB26, an architypal design, helpfully available as a ceiling light:

dmb26 ceiling light by marianna brandt for tecnolumen

or as, DMB27, a pendant:

hmb27 pendant light by marianne brandt for tecnolumen

Whilst the Bauhaus exhibition is on at the Barbican in London, there will be no shortage of information easily available about the Bauhaus. However, Tecnolumen's commitment to the Bauhaus extends to very useful, relevant and practical information that will always be available on their web site. This includes a bibliography of book and web sources, should you be interested in taking your understanding of the Bauhaus further.

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The Bauhaus: WG24 by Wilhelm Wagenfeld from Tecnolumen

WG24 table light by Wilhelm Wagenfeld from Tecnolumen The biggest Bauhaus exhibition in London since 1968 has just opened at the Barbican. As people become re-acquainted with the output of the School -- particularly of those who taught there -- as well as with the quality of design that it facilitated, and the influence that it has had ever since, there will be delight that some of the finest designs are still in production.

This is in no small part thanks to Tecnolumen, a company originally formed specifically to re-issue the WG24 that Wilhelm Wagenfeld designed in 1924, whilst he was studying at the Bauhaus under Laszló Moholy-Nagy. It comes in various forms, the version below with the metal (as opposed to glass) base and structure being the WA24.

WA24 table light by Wilhelm Wagenfeld from Tecnolumen

Only Tecnolumen has been licensed by Wilhelm Wagenfeld to manufacture this light. But there are fakes around! Here, Tecnolumen explains how to differentiate the real thing from the fakes (though, in our experience, it is usually easy enough to do by eye, because the fakes are badly proportioned and less well made).

Note that a pair of WG24s looks fabulous either side of a bed. They are well suited to being bedside lights, thanks to the diffused, glare-free light that they cast.

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