Diabolo Opal Glass Chandelier
Materials: Curved brass rods. Brass rod and canopy. Brass parts. Black painted brass middle part and conical tube. 10 brass ornamental screws. 5 white opal hand blown crystal glass diabolo lampshades. Bakelite sockets.
Height: 75 cm / 29.52”
Width: ∅ 65 cm / 25.59”
Electricity: 5 bulbs E14, 5 x 45 watt maximum, 110/220 volt.
Any type of light bulb can be used, not a specific one preferred.
Period: 1950s, 1960s – Mid-Century Modern.
Designer: To be appraised.
Manufacturer: Massive, Mortsel, Kontich and Wommelgem, Belgium.
Other versions: This diabolo opal glass chandelier exists in several versions. You can find another one over here. In all probability also wall lamps exists.
The diabolo opal glass lampshades are hand blown, none of these glasses are the same. They were in all probability made by the glass furnace company De Rupel from Boom.
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.
The electric parts were made by the VLM Components company from Buccinasco, near Milan in Italy. They were made in the 1950s, early 1960s.
Today VLM Components is owned By Relco. It is one of the biggest suppliers of switches, cords and plugs in Europe. VLM Components became famous because of the switches they produce that were designed by Achille Castiglioni in 1968.
Diabolo is the name given to the shape of the lampshade. The diabolo lampshades were very popular in the 50s. You can find several examples on Vintageinfo.
The diabolo, some yo-yo, has it’s origin in China. It’s a double-coned bobbin that can be twirled, tossed, and caught on a string secured by two sticks, one held in each hand. The first diabolos were made of bamboo and they made some whistling sound.
In the eighteenth century, the diabolo became known in England and France. The term “diabolo” was made up by French engineer Gustave Phillippart, who developed the modern diabolo in the early twentieth century and he was re-released. Since then, he has been widespread.
Many types of diabolo lamps exists. Some say the first design for a lamp was by the French designer Pierre Guariche.