1960s Chrome Sputnik Chandelier
Materials: Chromed metal (iron & brass) rods. Pointing in every direction. Chrome globe in the middle. Chromed plastic balls. Some metal parts. Chrome rod and tubular chrome canopy. Bakelite E14 sockets.
Total Height: 90 cm / 35.43”
Height: 40 cm / 11.02”
Width: ∅ 40 cm / 9.84”
Electricity: 12 bulbs E14, 12 x 40 watt maximum, 110/220 volt.
Any type of light bulbs can be used, but silver-tipped bulbs are preferred.
Period: 1960s, 1980s – Mid century modern.
Designer: To be appraised.
Manufacturer: S.A. Boulanger, Anderlecht, Belgium.
Other versions: This 1960s chrome sputnik chandelier is model 2174/12. These chandeliers were also made with more or less light bulbs. Made as a flush mount, a table lamp and a floor lamp. Complete brass versions were also produced.
These chandeliers exists with 1 and 2 circuits.
These type of chandeliers were made in many forms, sizes and interpretations. Made from the 1950s until now in every country in Europe. Also made in the United States. Beware for the new ones if you want an old chandelier! Easy to see: the new ones almost all have white plastic sockets inside the chromed part, they must be made of black Bakelite. And of course new ones all have labels and most of them are made in China. Rogue traders remove the labels! So buy a lamp with a label.
The earliest design of this lamp dates back from the late 1950s, when the Soviets launched their Sputnik 1 satellite into orbit (1957): the space age has begun. Gaetano Sciolari was one of the first designers of this type of lamps, if not the first.
Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin (9 March 1934 – 27 March 1968) was the first human to journey into outer space, when his Vostok spacecraft completed an orbit of the Earth on 12 April 1961.
S.A. Boulanger was founded in Anderlecht, Belgium in 1945. The company is famous for the large amount of lights it produced that were designed by Gaetano Sciolari. At some point in the 1980s the company changed their name in Les Ateliers Boulanger NV.
It has long been thought that they were two different companies, but that is because a trader from Liège, Belgium persisted that the lamps came from Herstal, near Liège.
In 1996 the company had 11 employees. The firm moved in 1998 to the Martelarenlaan 155 in 3010 Kessel-Lo, near Leuven. In the period 1995 – 2001 Jean-Philippe Spalart was the CEO. He did a feasibility study for the transfer of the company to China, Eastern Europe and Africa. Relocation of the manufacture in Zimbabwe.
Boulanger was specialised in metal processing and manufacturers high-end lamps and lighting fixtures. Les Ateliers Boulanger ended business in 2006.
Massive & Boulanger
Massive sold several Boulanger models over the years. The only difference is the typical Massive canopy/ceiling cap and some other parts.
Old text from the 1990s
“Boulanger sells mainly in the high-end lighting markets in Belgium, Germany and Luxembourg. The growing sales in the US and in South Africa are of growing importance to the company. Due to the highly competitive market, having product with a high added value is very important. The intelligent lamp is an important advantage, compared to our competitors, and will increase our market share in an important way.
The most important local competitors are Massive, a Belgian company, market leader in Europe (turnover of 100 MEUR), Deknudt at Deerlijk (turnover 2.5 MEUR) and some 10 other Belgian competitors of its own size. There is important competition from southern European and Asian competitors. The market share of Boulanger is only a few percent of the share of the Belgian companies. It is a small company with a turnover of about 300 k EURO.”
“Most Boulanger lamps are low voltage and halogen lamps (220V up to 300W or 12V up to 50W).
The products are sold to retail shops. In Belgium, about 300 retail shops sell its products. There are around 40 retail shops abroad: Luxembourg, Germany, France and South Africa.”
Lamps in the movies
A 1960s chrome sputnik chandelier was used as a prop in the 1998 crime comedy film Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. Starring Jason Flemyng, Dexter Fletcher and Jason Statham. Many other lamps appear in this movie.