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Erpé Desk Lamp 52

Materials: Black painted cast iron rectangular base. Black painted iron double rod/slat. Black Bakelite lampshade, white painted  on the inside. Brass and porcelain socket.

Height: 42 cm / 16.53” – adjustable

Width: 22,2 cm / 8.74”

Width base: 19,7 x 9,7 cm / 7.75 x 3.81”

Electricity: 1 bulb E27, 1 x 100 watt maximum, 110/220 volt.
Any type of light bulb can be used, not a specific one preferred.

Period: 1920s, 1950s – Bauhaus, Art Deco.

Designer: To be appraised.

Manufacturer: Erpé or Erpe, Belgium.

Other versions: This Erpé desk lamp 52 was also made with a green lampshade.

Erpé was the name of the company. They made many industrial style desk lamps like this one. This table lamp is model 52. At some point the name Erpé on the lamps was changed into Erpe. 

Erpe is a sub-municipality of Erpe-Mere near the city of Aalst in Belgium but it’s got nothing to do with this brand. The history society of Erpe-Mere was contacted and they asked their members if somebody knew anything about a light factory with the same name and nobody ever heard of it.

Also a search in the Belgian Official Journal (Belgisch Staatsblad – Moniteur Belge) gave no result. Only a restaurant in Brussels with the name Erpe was found, it ended business in 2006. The database of the Belgian Official Journal contains corporate references to publications from January 1, 1983, so the Erpe light company was already gone at that time. To be continued…

A similar base for a comparable desk lamp was also used by the French company Niam from Paris and the German company Robert Pfäffle – Erpees. A very similar name… Several companies produced desk lamps like these.

Lamps in the movies

An Erpé desk lamp 52 was used as a prop in the 2009 Belgian-French biographical drama film Sœur Sourire (Sister Smile). Starring Cécile de France, Sandrine Blancke and Jan Decleir.

Erpé desk lamp 52 used as a prop in the film Sœur Sourire (2009)

Erpé Desk Lamp 52 cast iron black painted Bakelite lampshade 1920s 1930 1940s Bauhaus Art Deco

Erpé Desk Lamp 52 cast iron black painted Bakelite lampshade 1920s 1930 1940s Bauhaus Art Deco