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Gino Sarfatti Model 540 Table Lamp

First of all: this lamp is NOT a lamp by Gino Sarfatti, although everyone says it.

Materials: Folded smoked clear acrylic base. Gold coloured perforated chromed metal (iron) eyeball, globe lampshade. Perforated with elongated slots. Chrome reflector inside. Some plastic and metal parts. Porcelain E14 socket.

Height: 22.2 cm / 8.74”

Width: 11.3 cm / 4.44”

Electricity: 1 bulb E14, 1 x 60 watt maximum, 110/220 volt.
Any type of light bulb can be used. But a gold cupped light bulb gives the most beautiful result with this gold coloured table lamp.

Period: 1970s – Mid-Century Modern.

Designer: To be appraised.

Manufacturer: Insta GmbH, Hohe Steinert 10, 58509 Lüdenscheid, Germany.

Other versions: This “Gino Sarfatti model 540 table lamp” was copied in several sizes and colours. It is also produced as a big floor lamp. Even chandeliers exists. Many different variations in the design. Today’s copies are all made in China. Sometimes the acrylic is made to thin; the globe falls down after a while. Beware when you buy one!

This table lamp was produced in the 70s, 80s, to see on its wiring.

The design of this lamp is based on lamp model 540 designed by Gino Sarfatti in 1968. It has many similarities, even the size. But it’s different. Below are pictures from the book Gino Sarfatti – Selected Works 1938-1973. As you can see the holes in the lampshade are not around the globe such as with this one. They are on top and go from front to back. The holes are round.


A touch version (switch by touch) was also produced by Insta GmbH for a long time. Exactly the same table lamp. The company was founded in 1970 by Berker, Gira + Jung. In all probability this lamp was also produced by them. It was named Sensorette. Several versions were produced.

Gino Sarfatti

Gino Sarfatti was born in Venice, Italy in 1912 and studied aero naval engineering at the University of Genoa. He founded his company Arteluce in 1935 and sold it to FLOS in 1973.

Sarfatti died on March 6, 1985 in Gravedona, Como, Italy. Some sources say it was 1984.

Today FLOS still produces his famous chandelier model 2097 from 1957 with 30 to 50 light bulbs.

Acrylic: often named by its commercial name: Perspex, Plexiglas, Crylux, Acrylite, Lucite, is a thermoplastic.

The real Gino Sarfatti model 540 table lamp

Gino Sarfatti - Selected Works 1938-1973 - 540 P Table Lamp 1968

Gino Sarfatti - Selected Works 1938-1973 - 540 G Table Lamp 1968

Video: Expo about Gino Sarfatti at the Milan Triennale in 2012 – 250 lights