The Anglepoise lamp is a balanced-arm lamp designed in 1932 by British designed George Carwardine.
It was the first lamp that has a lamp shade that allows users to change the direction of the lamp & protecting user’s eyes. That meant to say that it was an efficient & energy saving product.
The joints & spring tension allows the lamp to be moved into a wide range of positions which it will maintain without being clamped.
It was designed in 1932 by British designer George Carwardine. At that time Carwardine was happened to be a car designer specializing in vehicle suspension system.
The lamp was created whilst developing a new concept for vehicle suspension, as Carwardine recognized the mechanism had uses for other things (concept has nothing to do with imitating human arm motions contrary to popular belief).
Carwardine applied for patent on 4th July 1932 & manufactured himself using his own Carwardine Accessories Workshop. He then moved into bigger licensing agreement with “Terry Spring & Company”, due to needing major expansion because of a high demand/interest.
So why is the Anglepoise the greatest design?
- It is functional, perfect for at home reading a book or sitting at a desk doing some studying.
- In the 21st century the Anglepoise company has grown twofold. The lamp’s popularity is multiplying on a global scale in homes, shops, workplaces & restaurants
- In a rapidly evolving industry of electrical software design, the Anglepoise is constantly adapting (adding touch sensitive dimmers & LED lighting) but sticking with it’s conventional balanced-arm functionality.
- Even though the lamp was created in the early 20th Century it still played a major role in modern designs.
1931: INVENTED BY A CAR DESIGNER
1931: Automotive engineer, George Carwardine develops a theoretical concept for balancing weights using springs, cranks and levers. Using special springs with a ‘constant tension’ quality developed by Terry’s, Carwardine had chanced upon the means to create an articulated task lamp that could combine ultimate flexibility with perfect balance. A patent is filed and, in 1933 the first four-spring Anglepoise lamp is launched.
1935: REWORKED FOR A DOMESTIC MARKET
The four-spring Anglepoise is deemed too industrial for a domestic market so, in 1935, Carwardine, together with the designers at Terry’s, develops a three-spring version. This design, known as the Anglepoise Original 1227™, has been refined over the years but is generally considered the archetypal Anglepoise lamp.
1939: A PRODUCT SALVAGED FROM LOCH NESS
Anglepoise Navigator’s lamps are produced for the World War II bombers between 1939-1944. Four decades later, an American team searching for the Loch Ness Monster salvages a Wellington bomber submerged in the mud. Remarkably the lamp still works! Known as R for Robert, the plane, complete with working lamp, is exhibited at the Brooklands Museum in Surrey, UK.
1979: CAPTURING THE ZEITGEIST
The anthropomorphic quality of the Anglepoise lamp design has inspired musicians, artists, designers and writers over the years. In 1979, the proto-punk pop band, The Soft Boys, release “(I want to be an) Anglepoise lamp”. Six years later in 1985, innovative sculptor, David Mach creates “The Giant Hand Sculpture named Knuckle Shuffle” from 360 black Anglepoise lamps.
2003: AMONG BRITAIN’S MOST DISTINGUISHED DESIGNERS
Having previously identified the Anglepoise as his favorite design and a ‘minor miracle of balance’, Sir Kenneth Grange, responsible for some of Britain’s most iconic and successful designs, including the Kenwood Mixer, the Kodak Instamatic, the Intercity 125 train and the updated London taxi, becomes Design Director of Anglepoise. His first Anglepoise design, the Type 3 desk lamp is launched in 2003.
2005: THE GREAT BIG FRIENDLY GIANT
Anglepoise is approached by the “Roald Dahl Museum” and Story Center to produce a giant version of the Anglepoise Original 1227™ lamp that sat on the desk in Dahl’s writing hut. Three prototypes are produced; one for the Center, a second is sold to film director, Tim Burton and a third was exhibited at the 100% Design Exhibition in London. The lamp generates so much interest that it is put into volume production.
2009: AN ICONIC BRITISH BRAND
To celebrate the 75th anniversary, in 2009 the Anglepoise Original 1227 is featured on a Royal Mail stamp, alongside other iconic British designs including the K2 Telephone Kiosk, the Routemaster Bus, the London Underground Map and the Mini.
2013: A BLUEPRINT FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS
Anglepoise is selected by the Design Museum as one of six design stories that illustrate the impact of contemporary design on our everyday lives. Extraordinary Stories about Ordinary Things will remain on permanent display until 2015. Early examples of Anglepoise lamps can also be seen at the Victoria & Albert Science Museum in London and Anglepoise is included in the Vitra Design Museum’s touring exhibition, Lightopia, which opened in Germany on 29th September.
2014: ANGLEPOISE + PAUL SMITH – EDITION ONE
Created for Anglepoise by leading British industrial product designer, Sir Kenneth Grange, the timeless Type 75 design provides the perfect canvas for Paul Smith known for his mastery of color. Its streamlined, modernist form has become the designer’s palette and its no-frills, mechanical functionality is highlighted by his playful color-by-component approach.
2015: ANGLEPOISE + PAUL SMITH – EDITION TWO
“After the success of my first Anglepoise lamp, I’m very happy to be working with them again on a fresh version. I hope everyone likes it!” – Paul Smith
Once again Paul Smith collaborated with Anglepoise to create the Type 75™ Desk Lamp – Paul Smith – Edition Two, testament to this designer’s remarkable deftness in instilling modernity and new life into a well-loved design classic.
2015: ANGLEPOISE + CENTRE POINT
To celebrate the revival of Center Point, one of London’s most recognized landmarks, Anglepoise
worked with Eley Kishimoto to create a series of striking new editions of the Original 1227™ desk lamp. Embellished with exclusive Eley Kishimoto print designs inspired by the Center Point façade, the ergonomic simplicity of the iconic Anglepoise design reflects the building’s architectural majesty.