Staff Cobra Desk Lamp – Publicity
Staff Leuchten – Staff & Schwarz Leuchtenwerk (lighting plant) – was established by Alfred Staff and Otto Schwarz in Lemgo, (West) Germany in 1945.
Their business started as a shop for consumer goods in wood and metal as well as pesticide for controlling the Colorado potato beetle, a huge problem at that time.
Within a year they the company expanded with 15 employees and they produced the first wrought iron luminaires. Over the next three decades, Staff was to develop into a world leader in design excellence, receiving over 200 awards for their achievements.
Staff also collaborated with the Italian company Stilnovo. They published a joint catalogue in the 1970s. The Dutch Raak and the Danish Lyfa sold several lamps in the 60s and 70s. Several other companies did.
In 1994 Zumtobel bought the company.
Staff Cobra Desk Lamp
Materials: Flat black metal base. Black plastic flexible with a metal gooseneck inside. Black plastic and aluminium lampshade. White painted Bakelite E14 socket.
Lampshade: 18 cm / 7.08”
Height: 57 cm / 24.40”
Width: ∅ 22 cm / 7.87”
Electricity: 1 bulb E14, 1 x 40 watt maximum, 110/220 volt.
Any type of light bulb can be used, not a specific one preferred.
Period: 1970s, 1980s – Mid-Century Modern.
Designer: Masayuki Kurokawa.
Manufacturer: Staff & Schwarz Leuchtenwerke GMBH, Lemgo, Germany. Yamagiwa Corporation, Japan.
Other versions: This Staff Cobra desk lamp exists in a few variations and colours.
The Staff Cobra desk lamp received an iF Design Award in 1977.
Masayuki Kurokawa, born 1937 in Nagoya, Japan is an architect and product designer. Kurokawa is known as the Leonardo da Vinci from Tokyo. A godfather figure who initiated a new era of architecture and industrial moulding design in Japan.
He established Kurokawa Masayuki Architect Studio in 1967. Butsugaku Research Institute in 1998 and Designtope Co. Ltd. in 2001. Designtope supports the creative activities of designers.
He was a guest professor on several universities in Japan and China. Masayuki Kurokawa is awarded many times for his designs.
The Yamagiwa corporation was founded in 1923 by Hirofumi Yamagiwa (1900-1947). Yamagiwa is the leading Japanese lighting manufacturer. The company also sells lighting from several lamp producers from around the globe. Among others: FLOS, Frank Lloyd Wright, Louis Poulsen, Artemide, Hans-Agne Jakobsson, Le Klint, Anglepoise, Tom Dixon and many more. Yamagiwa is part of Maruwa Co., Ltd.
The company produced many lamps for Staff. Among others the lamps designed by Kazuo Motozawa and Motoko Ishii.
Links (external links open in a new window)
Masayuki Kurokawa – MoMA Museum New York
Kurokawa Masayuki Architect Studio website
Staff Cobra lamp – iF Design Awards website
History of the Staff company can be found here: 60 Years of Light from Lemgo – Zumtobel plant celebrates historic milestones
Colorado potato beetle on Wikipedia as an agricultural pest
Oyster wall lamp – Dieter Witte
Cross Oyster wall lamp – Rolf Krüger
Motoko Ishii globe flush mount
Many thanks to Lluís from Eclectique Vintage for the photos and the enthusiasm.