“H” is for Henningsen
- Poul Henningsen, 1894-1967, Danish architect, writer, multi-artist. On the background of the emancipated radical cultural environment of the 1920s he displayed great inventiveness in many fields.
- Official website of Denmark
— Poul Henningsen was born in Copenhagen in 1894. He never graduated as an architect, but studied at The Technical School at Frederiksberg, Denmark from 1911-14, and then at Technical College in Copenhagen from 1914
He started practicing traditional functionalistic architecture, but over the years his professional interests changed to focus mainly on lighting which is what he is most famous for. He also expanded his field of occupation into areas of writing, becoming a journalist and an author. Living Edge
“1950s Poul Henningsen Artichoke Light, its kinda like an industrial/no frills version of a chandelier..” Ella Drake
- Poul Henningsen Artichoke pendant light, 1958 by Louis Poulsen. / Case Da Abitare and tumblr
His most valuable contribution to design was in the field of lighting. He designed the PH-lamp in 1925, which, like his later designs, used carefully analyzed reflecting and baffling of the light rays from the bulb to achieve glare-free and uniform illumination. Wikipedia
Quotes from PH
“From the age of 18, when I began to experiment with light, I have been searching for harmony in lighting”
“It doesn’t cost money to light a room correctly, but it does require culture.”
Poul Henningsen did not grew up with the electric light but in the soft glow of the petroleum lamp. His constant inspiration and aim was to cultivate the electric light to achieve a similar softness but yet utilize this new powerful light source.
“I do not subscribe to the idea of an ever-increasing demand for more powerful lighting intensity. It is tempting, but inartistic to continue to increase lighting intensity.”
At Stockholm Furniture Fair 2015, Danish architectural lighting manufacturer Luis Poulsen relaunched an iconic PH lamp designed in 1929 by maestro Poul Henningsen. The new limited edition of PH 3½-2½ comes with a opal glass or untreated copper shade that oxidates over time.
- PH 5
Poul Henningsen Chair Designs
PH Vintage Snake Chair
Poul Henningsen Sprawl Chair
We will close this post with perhaps the most flamboyant and genius design of all in the portfolio of PH…..
- The Magnificent Grand Paino by Poul Henningsen looks like it came from the distant future, yet it was designed in 1931, a true timeless design undeniably ahead of its time.
He designed this Piano in steel, aluminum, red leather and plexiglass, thus creating a unique design that stands out on its right as a piece of art. http://www.designisthis.com/blog/en/post/poul-henningsen-grand-piano
Creative genius Poul Henningsen introduced his mind-altering design in 1931 – and it still belongs to the future. Look ahead twenty years. Now look again. There is nothing else like it, and there never will be. It is the first time you see a grand piano in a new light – and it changes everything.
The wooden box is turned into a thing of transparent beauty. It doesn’t take up space – it is space. And it creates a place. A place for thought. PH Pianos website
- This is how music looks. And what you see is what you hear – the sound is brilliant and crystal clear like the concept of the design itself. If you ever get to play it, that is. Because you can’t take your eyes off it.
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C is for Castiglioni
“Start from scratch. Stick to common sense. Know your goals and means”.
Achille Castiglioni (February 26, 1918 – December 2, 2002) was a renowned Italian industrial designer. He was often inspired by everyday things and made use of ordinary materials.He preferred to use a minimal amount of materials to create forms with maximal effect.
Achille Castiglioni was born in Milan and studied architecture at the Politecnico di Milano University and set up a design office in 1944 with his brothers, Livioioni Castiglioni and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni. In 1956, Castiglioni founded the Associazione per il Disegno Industriale (Association for Industrial Design, ADI). Castiglioni taught for many years, first at the Politecnico di Torino, and in 1969 he led a class in Industrial Design at the Politecnico di Milano.
MoMA’s permanent collection in New York hosts 14 of his works. Other works may be found in the following museums: Victoria and Albert Museum in London, Kunstgewerbe Museum in Zurich, Staatliches Museum für Angewandte Kunst in Munich, Design Museum in Prato, Uneleckoprumyslove Museum in Prague, Israel Museum in Jerusalem, The Denver Art Museum, Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein, Angewandte Kunst Museum in Hamburg and Koln
Achille Castiglioni, Sella telephone stool, 1957, for Zanotta (designed with Pier Giacomo Castiglioni).
1980’s ‘vintage’ Leonardo table, Achille Castiglioni Architectural trestle work table
Pin by Ryan Tam on Tables | Pinterest
the achille castiglioni effect
The famous Arco Floor Lamp with its elegant marble base was designed in 1962 by Achille Castiglioni and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni for the Italian manufacturer Flos.
Design is one of the highest expressions of twentieth-century creativity, and Achille Castiglioni is one of its greatest masters. His objects stand as clear examples of rigorous method, technical skill, exuberant talent, and wit, combined to achieve a beauty that is fulfilling on both a rational and an emotional level. His work exemplifies the ideal of good design.
With his functional and purist yet playful objects, Castiglioni has shown that form and function, while certainly the main ingredients for successful design, cannot be a designer’s only concerns. He has thus contributed invaluably to updating modernist design to contemporary modern.
Department of Architecture and Design
Excerpt from MOMA exhibition
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We welcome our friend and guest blogger, Charu Gureja. “I’m an interior designer, passionate about interior spaces, architecture, furniture, lighting and art. Generally speaking, I enjoy anything and everything related to art and design! Growing up in countries like Egypt, Japan, Sri Lanka, India and Singapore, I’ve come to appreciate a wide variety of design principles.” Pocket Full of Design . Charu brings to us her global point of view and her specific interest in modern lighting.
Like other elements of Mid-century Modern design, lighting fulfills both the aesthetic and functional needs of a space while eliminating the need for extraneous decoration. The fixtures have simple yet sculptural forms, which make them versatile enough to fit into spaces of any style, be it traditional, industrial, eclectic or contemporary.
Through the following examples I hope to inspire you to create your own unique look using Mid-century Modern lighting. The Paradigm Gallery website and blog are a great resource in terms of inspiration and products to help you along and I’m thankful to them for inviting me to share my thoughts here!
The beautiful Solvesborg bridge in Sweden
The beautiful Solvesborg bridge in Sweden
Completed in 2013, the Solvesborg Bridge in Sweden is the longest pedestrian bridge in Europe. The bridge consists of a higher part made out of three characteristic vaults and a long wooden bridge for pedestrians. ljusarkitektur has developed a unique lighting scheme to enhance its landmark status. the use of color changing LED fixtures from lumenpulse graze the suspension cables of what is considered Europe’s longest bicycle and pedestrian viaduct.
The team of architectural lighting experts planned the lighting “with respect for the birdlife and is inspired by the migration of the birds during the whole year. In this way the character of the bridge changes over the year and the night. In addition to this there are a number of scenarios to be used for different events in the city.” http://www.ljusarkitektur.com/en/portfolio/solvesborg-bridge/
“The overall design was achieved without impacting on the local wildlife – to limit glare, the firm integrated deep, custom glare shields, which also hide the light sources. influenced by the surrounding fauna and flora, ljusarkitektur pushed the fixtures’ flexibility and controlability to program different color sequences throughout the year. managing to be both dynamic and understated, the glowing, reflective installation has turned the bridge into an attraction in its own right.” http://bit.ly/1hlrDLJ
I close with the words of Louis Kahn who was an architect known for his philosophy of incorporating natural light in his architecture. Indeed this project is LED lighting but the use of light takes it to another level and enhances the architectural grace of the structure and it’s setting.
“I sense a Threshold: Light to Silence, Silence to Light – an ambiance of inspiration, in which the desire to be, to express, crosses with the possible … Light to Silence, Silence to Light crosses in the sanctuary of art.”
Those who cross this bridge may not say these exact words but I am certain they experience “the sanctuary of art” this bridge gifts to the world.
Solvesborg bridge in Sweden
Due to the length of the bridge, at intervals along the way parts of the nature have been accentuated with light, for example trees and reeds are lit.
Solvesborg bridge in Sweden