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Kalmar Lighting

Austrian

In 1881, Julius August Kalmar founded Kalmar, a Viennese company that produced handcrafted objects of cast bronze. Kalmar developed a fine reputation and exhibited internationally often, but it was Kalmar’s son, Julius Theodor Kalmar, who took over in 1913 and made the company shine with its modernist lighting.

Having studied at the Birmingham School of Art and Design and under the Austrian architect Josef Hoffmann at the Vienna School of Applied Arts, Julius was deeply inspired by the shift to modernity taking place in Europe and sought to work with the leading architects and designers of his time, including Austrian Werkbund architects Josef Frank and Oskar Wlach as well as Ernst Plischke, Clemens Holzmeister and Oswald Haerdtl. Similar to the Wiener Werkstätte cooperative cofounded by Hoffmann that prized materials, form and function, Kalmar viewed his company’s lighting fixtures as “quite humble things” meant to “fit in and serve their purpose of functionally illuminating spaces without glare.”

In 1925, Kalmar began selling in Haus und Garten, the forward-looking decor shop founded by Frank and Wlach. By 1931, a close partnership with the Austrian Werkbund association of architects, artists and craftsmen allowed the company to realize its vision of early 20th-century modernity — a distinctly Viennese pairing of traditional workmanship with contemporary technology. These collaborations included chandeliers and other fixtures using traditional materials such as glass, bronze and brass while focusing on function over ornamentation. As the company grew, so too did the scope of its projects, and soon Kalmar was installing extravagant chandeliers for the Vienna Opera, the Burgtheater, Vienna stock exchange and other sites.

Under the guidance of Rudolf Calice, Julius Theodor Kalmar’s son-in-law, the 1960s saw Kalmar’s popularity grow, thanks in part to the success of more decorative pieces like the ice-glass fixtures created with Austrian sculptor Karl Gruber. Thomas Calice, the great-grandson of Kalmar’s founder, led the company in the 1990s and its expansion to international lighting projects while shifting away from serial production. In 2009, Thomas’s son August Chalice established Kalmar Werkstätten to produce fixtures that reference the Kalmar archives but also feature updates on the iconic designs. Kalmar continues to produce bespoke fixtures while also working on custom lighting projects around the world, from cruise ships to the Burj Khalifa.

On 1stDibs, find a collection of vintage Kalmar lighting that includes wall lights, floor lamps and other fixtures.

Average Sold Price
$2,893
Styles
Materials
Kalmar Floor Lamp, Brass Height Adjustable Leather Stem Model 'Telescope'
By J.T. Kalmar, Kalmar Lighting
Located in Vienna, AT
Kalmar floor lamp, Brass Height Adjustable Model 'Telescope', Austria 1969. Original patinated cognac leather with renewed lamp shade.
Category

1960s Austrian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Kalmar Lighting

Materials

Brass

Stunning Gilt Brass, Crystal Glass Light Fixture Palazzo, Kalmar, Austria, 1970
By Kalmar Lighting
Located in Aachen, NRW
A wonderful gilt brass light fixture made by Kalmar (Series: Palazzo), Austria, manufactured, circa 1970-1979. Three tiers structure gathering many structured glasses, beautifully r...
Category

1970s Austrian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Kalmar Lighting

Materials

Crystal, Brass

Kalmar 'Hase TL' Table Lamp of Brass & Leather
By Kalmar Lighting
Located in Utrecht, NL
Table lamp model 'Hase TL' by Austrian Kalmar Lighting. The freestanding lamp 'Hase' from 1954 is another exemplar of the Wiener Werkbund. Using simple metal tubing and the basic ben...
Category

1950s Austrian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Kalmar Lighting

Materials

Brass

1 of the 2 Large Square Glass Flush Mounts J.T. Kalmar, Austria
By J.T. Kalmar, Kalmar Lighting
Located in Rijssen, NL
Clean lines to complement all decors. Amazing large scale square glass flushmount by J.T. Kalmar, Vienna, Austria, manufactured in circa 1970, (late 1960s and early 1970s). Multiple...
Category

1960s Austrian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Kalmar Lighting

Materials

Metal, Brass

1 of 2 Large Kalmar Sconce Wall Light by Kalmar, Austria, 1960s
By Kalmar Lighting, Carlo Nason
Located in Aachen, NRW
Wonderful midcentury wall sconces with 3 thick Murano glasses, made by Kalmar, Austria, manufactured, circa 1960-1969. Model: Pan High quality and in very good condition. Cleaned...
Category

1960s Austrian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Kalmar Lighting

Materials

Murano Glass

1 of 2 Pairs of Kalmar Brass & Murano Glass Sconces Wall Lights, Austria, 1970s
By Kalmar Lighting
Located in Aachen, NRW
Wonderful mid-century wall sconce with Murano glass, made by Kalmar, Austria, manufactured, circa 1960-1969. The frame is gilt brass. High quality and in very good condition. Clean...
Category

1970s Austrian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Kalmar Lighting

Materials

Brass

One of the Six Modern Handmade Light Fixtures by J.T. Kalmar, Austria, for Katie
By J.T. Kalmar, Kalmar Lighting
Located in Rijssen, NL
One of the six-light fixtures. T by J.T. Kalmar, Vienna, Austria, manufactured in circa 1959 this set is handmade and high end. The glass has beautiful wave texture in it, what gi...
Category

Mid-20th Century Austrian Mid-Century Modern Kalmar Lighting

Materials

Steel

Large Murano Ice Glass Flushmount by Kalmar, Austria, 1960s
By Kalmar Lighting
Located in Aachen, NRW
A stunning large flush mount by Kalmar, Austria, manufactured in the 1960s. The flush mount is composed of 13 thick textured ice glass elements attached to a brass metal frame. Won...
Category

1960s Austrian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Kalmar Lighting

Materials

Brass

Browse all Furniture from Kalmar Lighting
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Kalmar Lighting Sellers

Kalmar Lighting furniture for sale on 1stDibs

Furniture from Kalmar Lighting are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive objects are often made of glass and are designed with extraordinary care. In our Kalmar Lighting collection, there are many options to choose from, although beige editions of this piece are particularly popular. We have 780 vintage editions of these items in stock, while there is also a modern edition to choose from. Many original furniture by Kalmar Lighting were created in Europe during the 20th century in the Mid-Century Modern style. Many customers also consider furniture by J.T. Kalmar, Bakalowits & Söhne and Rupert Nikoll if you’re looking for additional options. The prices for the furniture can vary depending on size, time period and other attributes. 1stDibs's price for these items starts at US$245 and tops out at US$35,000, while pieces like these can sell for US$2,403.

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