5 Iconic Lighting Designers to Know | Lighting 101 | Ideas & Inspiration | Light
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5 Iconic Lighting Designers to Know
March 19, 2018

To Name a Few: 5 Iconic Lighting Designers to Know

1930-1970

Meet the minds behind some of the world’s most popular lights.

The Designer: Poul Henningsen of Louis Poulsen

The Fixture: PH 5 Pendant Light, 1958

In an embodiment of the “form meets function” philosophy, Henningsen developed what he believed to be “the ultimate solution” in pendant lighting. The PH 5 Includes three reflecting shades for an ambient, yet bright lighting effect. Fun fact: This light is a common wedding gift in Denmark.

The Designer: Achille Castiglioni of FLOS

The Fixture: Arco Floor Lamp, 1962

A problem solver at heart, Castiglioni looked to bring to market products that filled the needs of customers that they didn’t even know they had. In an effort to create lighting that provides an overhead glow without a cascade of wiring, he developed a floor lamp with a beautiful arch shape that gives the illusion that it defies gravity.  To give this appearance, the wide, sleek, and minimal silhouette is anchored by a base of elegant, and incredibly heavy, Carrera marble.

The Designer: Gino Sarfatti
The Fixture: The Sputnik, early 1950s

Inspired by the launch of the first satellite, Italian designer and pioneer of the mid-century modern movement, Gino Sarfatti designed this quintessential, radial fixture. The Sputnik is the embodiment of Sarfatti’s design principles as they apply to lighting -  practical, yet beautiful and always multi-directional.

The Designer: George Nelson

The Fixture: Saucer Lamp, 1948

Another mid-century modern favorite. Nelson was looking to create a spherical light with a silk covering and a warm glow that wasn’t prohibitively expensive. Inspired by self-webbing plastic used by the military at the time, he eschewed the cost and created the popular, white lantern pendant as we know it.

The Designer: George Cardwardine

The Fixture: Anglepoise, Original 1227 Task Lamp, 1935

Engineer, Carwardine, developed an update to the industrial spring, one that not only allowed the lamp to adjust but to stay in its adjusted position. This was the birth of the beloved task lamp that adorned desks everywhere and eventually became the delightful, troublemaking Pixar icon.