Vanilla Eyeball Desk Lamp
Materials: Vanilla painted iron flat round base. Chromed metal (iron) rod. Vanilla painted iron eyeball/globe lampshade. Black painted iron. Some black plastic parts and ornamental screw. Bakelite socket.
Height: 40,5 cm / 15.94”
Eyeball: ∅ 11 cm / 4.33”
Base: ∅ 16,5 cm / 6.49”
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. For this setup a spotlight was used.
Period: 1970s, 1980s – Mid-Century Modern.
Designer: To be appraised.
Manufacturer: Brilliant AG, Brilliantstraße 1, D-27442 Gnarrenburg, Germany.
Other versions: This Vanilla eyeball desk lamp exists in several colours and models, but all made with the same flat base. Made for many years, this one is from the 1980s.
Produced by Brilliant Leuchten, but sold by several companies in Europe. At least sold by Massive, Belgium, BHS, United Kingdom, Neweba, Switzerland and in all probability also sold by Fase from Spain. Al these companies sold many lamps by Brilliant AG.
Brilliant AG was founded in 1951 as Brillantglashütte oHG / Lippold and Tschammer in Gnarrenburg, Germany as a glass making company. In 1953, the glass-works started to produce bar pendant bowls out of glass. These lamp fittings were the first step towards the exclusive production of lighting fixtures.
In 1970, the facility for industrial glass had to be sold in order to create more space. At the end of the 70s, the name Brillantglashütte KG had been changed into Brillantleuchten AG. In 1991, the company name was changed for the last time. The German word “leuchten” (lights) has been deleted and a second “i” has been added to the final version Brilliant AG.
In 2000, the American Sli Inc. became the new main shareholder. Since 2004, the British “The National Lighting Company” has been the new main shareholder of Brilliant AG.
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.
Massive sold many lamps made by others. Peill + Putzler from Germany and Yamada Shomei from Japan produced lamps for Massive, to name a few. Many other lighting companies did.
These lamps were also sold by Neweba from Switzerland and Prova (BHS) in the UK.
The Neweba brand still exists and was founded in 1945.
British Home Stores was a British department store chain, primarily selling clothing and household items. The company was founded in 1928. The company went bankrupt in 2016. The Qatari Al Mana Group purchased BHS and formed a new business, BHS International (UK) Limited, based in London. It launched a new website: bhs.com.
The electric parts were produced by VLM Components in the 1980s. VLM Components was founded in 1945 in Buccinasco, a small village near Milan, Italy. VLM is part of the Relco Group, founded in 1967. Today they are the owners of the brands Relco, Leuci, Relco Lighting, VLM and Segno. The company is famous for the switches they produced that were designed by Achille Castiglioni.
The flat base is reminiscent of the Coupe and Spider table lamp Joe Colombo designed for Oluce in 1964.