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Poul Henningsen Ph 4/3 Table Lamp

US$1,270per item

About

The fixture is designed based on the principle of a reflective three-shade system, which directs the majority of the light downwards. The shades are made of metal and painted white to ensure diffuse, comfortable light distribution. Poul Henningsen designd the three-shade system during 1925/1926. The first lights using the system were designed for an exhibition in Paris. His work with Louis Poulsen continued until his death in 1967. Throughout his life, PH sought to create glare-free lighting; aiming to direct light where it was most needed, and creating soft shadows while using incandescent bulbs as a light source. PH 4/3 Table is a member of the three-shade family. Approximately one thousand different models have been produced over the years and consisted of table, floor and wall lamps, as well as a number of different chandeliers, which were popular in the 30s for lighting private homes with high ceilings. There were countless combination options. The lights were available in different colors, as well as a range of sizes. The first shades were made of metal with a painted undersurface, such as white, gold or silver depending on whether diffuse, warm or cold light was desired. Glass was later introduced for the three-shade system. In addition to the downward-directed light, glass lamps illuminated the room. PH was the first person to pursue a scientific approach to light and use the logarithmic spiral as a basis. By using a design based on the logarithmic spiral he achieved even distribution of light over the entire curve of the shade. This even light distribution, together with the diffuse reflection through the glass, made it possible to control glare and shadow. Each shade reduces the amount of light equally, due to their distance from the light source. The PH light model numbers refer to the shade size. Each top shade had a corresponding set of middle and lower shades. In the pure models, such as the 2/2, the top shade has a size of about 20 cm, with corresponding lower shades. PH 4/3 Table consists of an approximately 40 cm top shade, but uses lower shades from the 3/3 model. These hybrid models were introduced due to the desire to hang pendants at lower heights. The system was also used for wall, table and floor lamps. PH 4/3 Table in its current form was introduced in 1966.

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  • Shipping
    US$439 Standard Parcel Shipping
    to United States 0, arrives in 5-7 weeks, excluding production time.
    We recommend this shipping type based on item size, type and fragility.
    Ships From: Berkeley, CA
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About the Designer

Poul Henningsen

The name Poul Henningsen is synonymous with the best and most innovative modern Scandinavian lamps and other lighting. The Danish designer created a signature vocabulary of fixtures with tiered and layered shades in sculptural arrangements that are at once naturalistic and geometric. 

Henningsen grew up in a town on the outskirts of Copenhagen and studied architecture at the Technical University of Denmark. He would become a noted art critic, journalist and screenwriter, but his first love was lighting design.

Henningsen’s childhood home was illuminated by oil lamps. When his family switched to electrified lighting, he was alarmed and repelled by the harsh glare cast by an incandescent bulb, and in his late teens he began conducting quasi-scientific experiments to measure which materials and methods best diffused or reflected light to give it a warm brightness. His work came to the attention of the lighting-fixtures firm Louis Poulsen, which sponsored the development of a prototype lamp. The design won a gold medal at the 1925 Paris Expositions Internationales des Arts Decóratifs et Industriels Modernes — from which the term Art Deco derives. The lamp, whose three-part shade is said to be inspired by the arrangement of a dinner plate atop a soup bowl atop a teacup, became the basis for Henningsen’s most successful design, the PH 4/3 desk lamp.

All told, Henningsen would design some 100 lighting fixtures in his career. Some of his most notable creations are hanging lamps, which include the Septima (1929), a pendant composed of seven graduated frosted-glass layers; the Spiral (1942), made of a single ribbon of enameled aluminum; and the Artichoke lamp (1958), whose 70 glass or metal fins in a staggered and graduated arrangement on a central steel frame resemble those of its namesake. The last is likely Henningsen’s masterwork and an icon of mid-20th-century design. Like all Henningsen lighting designs, it is striking, sculptural and — thanks to his insistence on the primacy of the quality of the light cast — superbly functional.

Find a collection of authentic Poul Henningsen table lamps, floor lamps and other lighting on 1stDibs.

About the Seller
4.8 / 5
Located in Berkeley, CA
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Established in 2010
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