1950s Sputnik Chandelier
Materials: 6 curved brass rods. Black painted aluminium conical tube. Iron connector plate for the rods. Conical plastic light bulb holder decoration. Brass rod. Arrow-head below. Black painted aluminium canopy. Some brass parts and decoration. Brass E14 sockets with a porcelain ring.
Total Height: 40 cm / 15.74”
Width: 70 cm / 27.55”
Electricity: 6 bulbs E14, 6 x 25 watt maximum, 110/220 volt.
Any type of light bulb can be used, not a specific one preferred. But because it gives spreads light, it is wise to use frosted or opaque light bulbs.
Period: 1950s, 1960s – Mid-Century Modern.
Designer: To be appraised.
Manufacturer: Massive, Mortsel, Kontich and Wommelgem, Belgium – attributed.
Other versions: This 1950s sputnik chandelier exists in many forms, sizes and interpretations.
The earliest design of these chandeliers dates back from the 1950s, when the Soviets launched their Sputnik 1 satellite into orbit (1957): the space age.
The light bulbs used for this configuration are Girard Sudron GS20 Flame light bulbs from the 1980s. Girard Sudron is a French company founded in 1984 and located in Paris and today the market leader of the Filament LED lamp. They are specialised in decorative flame lamps. many of them based on older designs, such as these.
Massive was in origin a bronze foundry and they produced mainly candlesticks, crucifixes and chandeliers in Wilrijk near Antwerp, Belgium. The company was founded in 1926 by Pieter-Jozef De Jaeck. His son Eddy De Jaeck was responsible for the huge expansion of the company in the 1970s. But it were his sons, Piet and Jan De Jaeck who made Massive a true multinational. Thus, they moved production to Eastern Europe and China.
In the 1980s Massive became the leading brand in Europe. In 2002, the brothers left the company to the investment fund CVC Capital Partners, for allegedly more than 250 million euros.
Since 2008 the company is owned by Philips and the name of the shops is changed into Light Gallery.
When the takeover by Philips was announced in November 2006 Massive commercialised more than 10.000 lighting products under brand names such as Massive, TRIO and Lirio. The group had about 5.000 employees worldwide and was active in 70 countries.