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Memphis Group Lighting

Italian

To many people, postmodern design is synonymous with the Memphis Group. This Italian collaborative created the most radical and attention-getting designs of the period, upending most of the accepted standards of how furniture should look.

The Memphis story begins in 1980, when Ettore Sottsass, then a beacon of Italian postmodernism, tapped a coterie of younger designers to develop a collection for the Milan Furniture Fair the next year, determined that all the new furniture they were then seeing was boring. Their mission: Boldly reject the stark minimalism of the 1970s and shatter the rules of form and function. (Sottsass’s Ultrafragola mirror, designed in 1970, embodied many of what would become the collective’s postmodern ideals.)

The group decided to design, produce and market their own collection, one that wouldn’t be restricted by concerns like functionality and so-called good taste. Its debut, at Milan’s 1981 Salone del Mobile, drew thousands of viewers and caused a major stir in design circles.

So as a record of Bob Dylan’s “Stuck Inside of Mobile” played on repeat, they took their name from the song, devised their marketing strategy and plotted the postmodern look that would come to define the decade of excess — primary colors, blown-up proportions, playful nods to Art Deco and Pop art. A high-low mix of materials also helped define Memphis, as evidenced by Javier Mariscal’s pastel serving trays, which feature laminate veneer — a material previously used only in kitchens — as well as Shiro Kuramata’s Nara and Kyoto tables made from colored glass-infused terrazzo.

An image of Sottsass posing with his collaborators in a conversation pit shaped like a boxing ring appeared in magazines all over the world, and Karl Lagerfield furnished his Monte Carlo penthouse entirely in Memphis furniture. Meanwhile, members like Andrea Branzi, Aldo Cibic, Michele de Lucchi, Nathalie du Pasquier, Kuramata, Paola Navone, Peter Shire, George Sowden, Sottsass and his wife, journalist Barbara Radice, went on to enjoy fruitful careers.

Some people think of the Milan-based collective as the design equivalent to Patrick Nagel’s kitschy screenprints, but for others Memphis represents what made the early 1980s so great: freedom of expression, dizzying patterns and off-the-wall colors.

Eventually, the Reagan era gave way to cool 1990s minimalism, and Memphis fell out of fashion. Sottsass left the group in 1985, and by 1987, it had disbanded. Yet decades later, Memphis is back and can be traced to today’s most exciting designers.

“As someone who was born in the 1980s, Memphis at times feels like the grown-up, artsy version of the toys I used to play with,” says Shaun Kasperbauer, cofounder of the Brooklyn studio Souda. “It feels a little nostalgic, but at the same time it seems like an aesthetic that’s perfectly suited to an internet age — loud, colorful and utilizing forms that are graphic and often a little unexpected.”

Find a collection of vintage Memphis Group seating, tables, decorative objects and other furniture on 1stDibs.

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Creator: Memphis Group
Bay Table Lamp USA, 110 Volts, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Milano, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired, Bay Table Lamp in glass, aluminum and plexiglass, designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1983 for Memphis Milano. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Aluminum

Super Blue Table Light USA 110 Volts, by Martine Bedin for Memphis Milano Coll.
By Martine Bedin, Memphis Group, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired, Super Blue table or floor lamp in fiberglass, designed in 1981, by Martine Bedin. Color options also include: Yellow, White with Colored Sockets, and...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Glass, Fiberglass

Ashoka Metal Table Lamp USA 110 Volts, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano C.
By Memphis Milano, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired, Ashoka Table Lamp in lacquered metal, designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1981 for Memphis Milano. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Ettore Sottass "Pattica Lamp" for Memphis 'Post Design' Collection, 2000
By Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in London, GB
Ettore Sottsass Post design (Memphis), Milan, Italy. ‘Pattica’ lamp, 2000. Yellow dyed maple base with five florescent lamps. Original box. Fully function, supplied complete with ...
Category

Late 20th Century Italian Post-Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Piccadilly Table Lamp USA 110 Volts, by Gerard Taylor for Memphis Milano Collect
By Memphis Group, Gerard Taylor, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired, Piccadilly Table Lamp made in metal and plastic laminate, designed in 1982, by Gerard Taylor. Gerard Taylor graduated in design from Glasgow School...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Super White with Colored Sockets EU 220V, by Martine Bedin from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Martine Bedin, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, super white table or floor lamp in fiberglass with multicolored light bulbs. Designed in 1981, by Martine Bedin. Martine Bedin was born in Bordeau...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Glass, Fiberglass

Rossella Metal Ceiling Lamp EU 220 Volts, by Marco Zanini for Memphis Milano C.
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Marco Zanini
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The lacquered metal Rossella Ceiling Lamp, with EU wiring accessibility, was designed by Marco Zanini in 1985 for Memphis Milano. Marco Zanini was born in Trento in 1954. He graduat...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Treetops Floor Lamp USA 110 Volts, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Collect
By Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired "Treetops" floor lamp designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1981 in metal with halogen bulb. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he gradu...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Tahiti Table Lamp 'EU VERSION 220v', by Ettore Sottsass from Memphis, Milano
By Memphis Group, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired 220v 'Tahiti' table lamp, designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1981. The light fixture is of a polychrome enameled metal "duck" with a pivoting-like head mo...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Bay Table Lamp 'EU' 220 Volts, by Ettore Sottsass from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Milano, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, Bay table Lamp in glass, aluminum and plexiglass, designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1983 for Memphis Milano. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Aluminum

Oceanic Table Lamp USA 110 Volts, by Michele De Lucchi for Memphis Milano Collec
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Michele de Lucchi
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired (110v), Oceanic Table Lamp made in metal and glass, designed in 1981, by Michele De Lucchi. EU Version 220v available in another listing. Michele De ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Oceanic Table Lamp 'EU' 220 Volts, by Michele De Lucchi from Memphis, Milano
By Memphis Group, Memphis Milano, Michele de Lucchi
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, oceanic table lamp made in metal and glass, designed in 1981, by Michele De Lucchi. US version 110v also available in another listing. Michele De Lu...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Super Blue Table Light 'EU' 220 Volts, by Martine Bedin from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Martine Bedin, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, super blue table or floor lamp in fiberglass, designed in 1981, by Martine Bedin. Color options also include: Yellow, White with Colored Sockets, and...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Glass, Fiberglass

Treetops Floor Lamp 'EU' 220 Volts, by Ettore Sottsass from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Milano, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired 'Treetops' floor lamp, designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1981 in metal with halogen bulb. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 1939 he g...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Tahiti Table Lamp (US VERSION 110v), by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano Coll,
By Memphis Milano, Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired 'Tahiti' Table lamp, designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1981. The light fixture is of a polychrome enameled metal "duck" with a pivoting-like head mounted...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Santa Fe Porcelain Ceiling Lamp EU 220 Volts, by Matteo Thun for Memphis Milano
By Matteo Thun, Memphis Group, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the Santa Fe Porcelain Ceiling Lamp with EU wiring accessibility, designed in 1985 by Matteo Thun. The Lamp is made in porcelain, glazed in white and red. Lamp bul...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Porcelain

Super Yellow USA 110V Table or Floor Light, by Martine Bedin for Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Martine Bedin, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired, Super Yellow table or floor lamp in fiberglass, designed in 1981, by Martine Bedin. Color options also include: Blue, White with Colored Sockets, and...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Glass, Fiberglass

Santa Ana Ceramic Ceiling Lamp USA 110 Volts, by Matteo Thun from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Matteo Thun, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the Santa Ana Ceramic ceiling lamp with US wiring accessibility, designed in 1983 by Matteo Thun. The lamp is numbered and does not include the bulb. Born 1952 ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Ceramic

Ashoka Large Table Lamp by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano
By Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in Kansas City, MO
Ashoka lamp by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis, Milano, 1981. Excellent condition.
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Steel

Laurel Table Lamp (EU) 220 Volts, by Peter Shire for Memphis Milano Collection
By Memphis Group, Peter Shire, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
The Laurel Table light is wired with EU voltage accessibility, and originally designed in 1985 by Peter Shire. The light fixture is in sheet steel, painted dark-blue, purple, green a...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Steel

Super Yellow EU 220V Table or Floor Light, by Martine Bedin from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Milano, Martine Bedin, Memphis Group
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, super yellow table or floor lamp in fiberglass, designed in 1981, by Martine Bedin. Color options also include, blue, white with colored sockets, and...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Glass, Fiberglass

Santa Fe Matteo Thun for Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Matteo Thun
Located in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Santa Fe by Matteo Thun for Memphis Milano. Ceramic pendant lamp. Light is E26 or E27. Shade size is F 30/H 20 cm. cable 120cm.
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Ceramic

Contemporary Polychrome Memphis Table Lamp Designed by Ettore Sottsass, Italy
By Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in Copenhagen K, DK
Ettore Sottsass Italy, contemporary Polychrome enameled metal “duck” with pivoting head mounted on a black and white bacterio-patterned laminate base. New production of the “T...
Category

2010s Italian Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Enamel

Super White with Colored Sockets USA 110V by Martine Bedin for Memphis Milano C.
By Memphis Milano, Memphis Group, Martine Bedin
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired, Super White table or floor lamp in fiberglass with multicolored light bulbs. Designed in 1981, by Martine Bedin. Martine Bedin was born in Bordeaux ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Glass, Fiberglass

Terminus Floor Lamp 'EU 220 Volts', by Martine Bedin from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Milano, Memphis Group, Martine Bedin
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, Terminus floor lamp with Structure in painted sheet steel. One bulb 12V, 50W., designed in 1981, by Martine Bedin. Martine Bedin is an industrial...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Steel

Santa Fe Porcelain Ceiling Lamp USA 110Volts, by Matteo Thun from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Milano, Memphis Group, Matteo Thun
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the Santa Fe Porcelain Ceiling Lamp with US wiring accessibility, designed in 1985 by Matteo Thun. The Lamp is made in porcelain, glazed in white and red. Lamp bul...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Porcelain

Johanna Grawunder for Memphis four Large Light Objects wall lights, 1989
By Memphis Group, Johanna Grawunder
Located in Vienna, AT
Four early Johanna Grawunder lighting panels or sconces for Memphis, Italy, 1989. (each one measures 43.3" in length/height) New York based designer/architect and former partner of...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Lucite

Piccadilly Table Lamp 'EU' 220 Volts, by Gerard Taylor from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Milano, Gerard Taylor, Memphis Group
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, Piccadilly table lamp made in metal and plastic laminate, designed in 1982, by Gerard Taylor. Gerard Taylor graduated in design from Glasgow Scho...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Post Modern Memphis Milano, 1980s Oceanic Table Lamp by Michele de Lucchi
By Michele de Lucchi, Memphis Group
Located in Renens, CH
Authentic vintage Oceanic table lamp by Italian architect Michele de Lucchi for the Memphis movement in the early 1980s. De Lucchi was one of the co-founders of the postmodern design...
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Santa Monica Matteo Thun for Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Matteo Thun
Located in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Santa Monica by Matteo Thun for Memphis Milano. Ceramic pendant lamp. Light is E26 or E27. Shade size is f 30/H 12 cm. cable 120cm.
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Ceramic

Ashoka Metal Table Lamp 'EU' 220 Volts, by Ettore Sottsass for Memphis Milano
By Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, Ashoka table lamp in lacquered metal, designed by Ettore Sottsass in 1981 for Memphis Milano. Ettore Sottsass was born in Innsbruck in 1917. In 19...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Ettore Sottsas Tahiti Memphis Milano Postmodern
By Ettore Sottsass, Memphis Group
Located in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Ettore Sottsass's Tahiti lamp. Materpiece of 1980s design.        
Category

1980s European Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Stainless Steel

Martine Bedin Super Memphis Milano Postmodern
By Memphis Group, Martine Bedin
Located in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Famous Super lamp deigned by Martine Bedin. Six light bulb along with its back. With wheel and movable. Iconic one in Memphis Milano and 1980s Postmodern designs.  
Category

1980s European Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Stainless Steel

Santa Monica Ceiling Lamp USA 110 Volts, by Matteo Thun from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Milano, Memphis Group, Matteo Thun
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the Santa Monica Ceiling Lamp with US wiring accessibility, designed in 1983 by Matteo Thun. The ceiling lamp-shade is in ceramic, and lamp's bulb is not included....
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Ceramic

Santa Ana Ceramic Ceiling Lamp EU 220 Volts, by Matteo Thun for Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Matteo Thun, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the Santa Ana Ceramic Ceiling Lamp with EU wiring accessibility, designed in 1983 by Matteo Thun. The Lamp is numbered and does not include the bulb. Born 1952 in...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Ceramic

Super All White US 110V Table or Floor Lamp by Martine Bedin for Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Martine Bedin, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired, Super All White table or floor lamp in fiberglass, designed in 1981, by Martine Bedin. Color options for light sockets also include: blue, yellow, a...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Glass, Fiberglass

Piccadilly Table Lamp Gerard Tayler for Memphis Milano
By Memphis Group, Gerard Taylor
Located in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Piccadilly by Gerard Tayler for Memphis Milano. Light bulb is E14.
Category

1980s Italian Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Steel

Original "Oceanic" Table Lamp by Michele De Lucchi for Memphis
By Memphis Group, Michele de Lucchi
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Original oceanic table lamp designed by Michele De Lucchi for Memphis Group in Italy, 1981. Tubular painted metal, polychromatic paint. Retains original manufacturer's stamp to base....
Category

1980s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Super Lamp by Martine Bedin for Memphis Milano, Italy, 1981
By Martine Bedin, Memphis Group
Located in Vienna, AT
Super lamp, designed by Martine Bedin in 1981 for Memphis Group. To use a rolling table or floor lamp. From the first edition, made of fiberglass with rubber wheels. In excellent con...
Category

1980s Italian Memphis Group Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Metal

Michele de Lucchi Oceanic Memphis Milano Postmodern
By Memphis Group, Michele de Lucchi
Located in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Michele de Lucchi's oceanic lamp. Materpiece of 1980s design.    
Category

1980s European Post-Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Stainless Steel

Santa Monica Ceiling Lamp EU 220 Volts, by Matteo Thun for Memphis Milano Coll.
By Memphis Milano, Memphis Group, Matteo Thun
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the Santa Monica Ceiling Lamp with EU wiring accessibility, designed in 1983 by Matteo Thun. The ceiling lamp-shade is in ceramic, and lamp's bulb is not included....
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Ceramic

Super All White EU 220V Table or Floor Lamp by Martine Bedin from Memphis Milano
By Martine Bedin, Memphis Group, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, super all white table or floor lamp in fiberglass, designed in 1981, by Martine Bedin. Color options for light sockets also include: blue, yellow, an...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Glass, Fiberglass

1980s Sinerpica Table Lamp by Michele de Lucchi
By Memphis Group, Michele de Lucchi
Located in Renens, CH
Vintage Sinerpica table lamp by Italian architect Michele de Lucchi for the Memphis movement in the early 1980s. De Lucchi was one of the co-founders of the postmodern design group M...
Category

1980s Italian Mid-Century Modern Vintage Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Aluminum

Buenos Aires Floor Lamp USA 110 Volts, by Aldo Cibic for Memphis Milano Collect
By Memphis Group, Aldo Cibic, Memphis Milano
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the US wired, Buenos Aires Floor Lamp with printed aluminum base, orientable pipes in painted aluminum, and shade in porcelain, designed in 1986, by Aldo Cibic. ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Aluminum

Buenos Aires Floor Lamp 'EU' 220 Volts, by Aldo Cibic from Memphis Milano
By Memphis Milano, Aldo Cibic, Memphis Group
Located in Pregnana Milanese, IT
Here you are shown the EU wired, Buenos Aires floor lamp with printed aluminum base, orientable pipes in painted aluminum, and shade in porcelain, designed in 1986, by Aldo Cibic. ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Modern Memphis Group Lighting

Materials

Aluminum

Memphis Group lighting for sale on 1stDibs

Memphis Group lighting is available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive objects are frequently made of metal and designed with extraordinary care. There are many options in our collection of lighting from the Memphis Group, although beige editions of this piece are particularly popular. We stock 16 vintage versions of these items, while there are 32 modern editions to choose from as well. Many of the original lighting by Memphis Group were created in the Modern style in Europe during the 21st Century and Contemporary. If you’re looking for additional options, many customers also consider lighting by Mario Barbaglia and Marco Colombo, Martine Bedin and , Foster+Partners. Prices for Memphis Group lighting may vary depending upon size, time period and other attributes. Price for these items starts at $634 and tops out at $9,500, while pieces like these can sell for $1,384.

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