Van Haute Diabolo Desk Lamp
Materials: Black painted cast iron tripod base, crow’s foot style. Painted with wrinkle paint. Long curved brass rod. Brass joint and parts. Mint green aluminium diabolo lampshade, painted white inside. Brass E14 socket with a porcelain ring.
Height: 36 cm / 14.17”
Lampshade: ∅ 17 cm / 6.69”
Base: ∅ 16 x 10 cm / 6.29 x 3.93”
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: 1950s, 1960s – Mid-Century Modern.
Designer: To be appraised.
Manufacturer: Van Haute, Molenbeekstraat 79, Brussels, Belgium.
Other versions: This Van Haute diabolo desk lamp exists in two sizes. The bigger lamp has an E27 socket. Also made with an aluminium (sometimes perforated on the top) lampshade and made in several colours. Also produced with a goose-neck instead of a rod. The cast iron base was also used for other desk lamps.
Often said that this diabolo lampshade is a design by Louis Kalff (Philips), but that’s not true, of course.
VH or Van Haute is a lighting company from Brussels, Belgium. Van Haute had a factories in Brussels and in Aalst, some 25 km / 15 mi from each other. The company no longer exists. It probably ended business in the 70s. The old building of the company in Aalst still remains.
In the 1950s Van Haute mainly produced lighting with fluorescence tubes.
Van Haute produced many lamps in the style of others. For instance, the pendant lamp, here in blue and green with a circular fluorescence light bulb is almost always sold as a Louis Kalff design for Philips. The slits are reminiscent of a Louis Kalff design for Philips, hence the confusion.
Diabolo is the name given to the shape of the lampshade. The diabolo lampshades were very popular in the 1950s. You can find several examples on Vintageinfo.
The diabolo, some yo-yo, has its 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 diabolo’s 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.
The socket of this desk lamp was made by BJB. BJB is Brökelmann, Jäger and Busse, BJB GmbH & Co. KG. The BJB company was founded in 1867 and started with petroleum lighting. The company still exists. Today they produce LED lamps, terminal blocks and connectors, lamp holders for conventional lighting and switches. They are active in the whole world. BJB GmbH & Co. KG is located on Werler Strasse 1, 59755, Arnsberg, Germany.
The switch was made by VLM Components. VLM Components was founded in 1945 in Buccinasco, a small village near Milan, Italy. VLM Components is part of the Relco Group, founded in 1967. Today they are the owners of the brands Relco, Leuci, Relco Lighting, VLM Components and Segno. VLM Components became famous for the switches they produce which were designed by Achille Castiglioni in 1968.