Author Archive

Did Iittala make glass for Nordisk Solar?

Kristiina, a reader from Finland, recently brought our attention to an item for sale on Finnish auction website Huuto – a lamp that, using our ID Your Vintage Danish Lights site, she had identified as a Nordisk Solar Compagni P278g glass pendant light. Interestingly, however, [read more...]

Hammerborgs on film

Since becoming addicted to The Killing and Borgen we've tried out a mixed bag of other Danish TV series, and most recently have been watching The Protectors (Livvagterne in Danish). The set designer is clearly a Hammerborg fan, [read more...]

Why Jo Hammerborg’s Orient is incomplete without its louvre

So the first Jo Hammerborg light reproduction has finally appeared, and the wisdom of the crowd has made itself apparent in our poll by correctly predicting that the chosen model would be the Orient. [read more...]

Changes ahead in the market for Jo Hammerborg lights

One of the features that has driven the increasing popularity of 60s and 70s Fog & Mørup lighting as a target for collectors – along with the consistently high quality and design excellence of the individual lights themselves and the cohesiveness of the F&M brand as a whole during this period – has been the fact that (with the exception of the Semi) [read more...]

Fog & Morup did not produce Carl Thore lights

In recent months we have noticed an apparent increase in the number of eBay sellers repeating the incorrect claim that the multilayered pendant lamps usually known as Carl Thore lights were produced by Fog & Mørup. The true origin of the Carl Thore lamps and the story behind them [read more...]

Jo Hammerborg and the Formland lamp series

The information that emerged from our correspondence with the Hammerborg family over the past 18 months (which has informed our new biography of Jo Hammerborg) has also provided interesting new perspectives on some of our previous Fog & Mørup blog posts. [read more...]

Our new website dedicated to Jo Hammerborg

In May 2011 we wrote a post laying out the few facts we had been able to gather together during ten years of trawling through books, magazines, research libraries, personal contacts and the internet for information about Jo Hammerborg's life and work at Fog & Mørup, and appealed for readers with any further information to contact us. Today, thanks to [read more...]

Solved! the Danish star light designer mystery

A couple of years ago we wrote a post (which you can read here) about the fact that we had been unable to find reliable information about the origins of one of our favourite vintage Danish lights [read more...]

Another twist in the Jørn Utzon Søvaernspendel debate

The identity of the designer of the Søvaernspendel, the light produced first by Nordisk Solar Compagni and later by Louis Poulsen, has been the subject of an ongoing debate on this blog over the past couple of years. Our previous posts and the valuable insights contributed by our readers [read more...]

The lights of Louis Weisdorf: Multi-Lite (1974)

The economic downturn of the 1970s brought new challenges for the designers of high-end lamps and other luxury goods, as producers' support for the experiments of the 1960s gave way to a constant refrain of [read more...]

The lights of Louis Weisdorf: Ekko (1968)

The Ekko is another of Louis Weisdorf's designs based on repeating – or echoing – elements, though in this case the angular metallic sections take two forms, the two end pieces differing [read more...]

The lights of Louis Weisdorf: Turbo (1967)

Louis Weisdorf created the design for his Turbo pendant light in 1965, and in 1967 Lyfa was ready to start production. Consisting of 12 uniform aluminium lamellae spiral-twisted to form a flower-like sphere [read more...]

The lights of Louis Weisdorf: Facet (1966) and Facet-Pop (1970)

In the Facet pendant light, designed by Louis Weisdorf in 1963 and produced by Lyfa from 1966, the particular art of Weisdorf's lighting designs is perhaps most clearly visible. Like a 3D jigsaw puzzle, [read more...]

The lights of Louis Weisdorf: Konkylie (1964/65)

In 1963 when Danish architect Louis Weisdorf made the drawings for Konkylie, the first of his light designs, nine years had passed since (aged 22) he'd been one of the youngest ever graduates of Copenhagen's Royal Academy, [read more...]

More on the origins of the Søvaernspendel

A Danish reader, Harry Møller Nielsen, left a most interesting comment yesterday on our blog entry Jørn Utzon and the Søvaernspendel, one of two we wrote last December [read more...]

Your favourite Louis Weisdorf light design

It's been some time since our last blog post, but we haven't been idle in the meantime, and our main project has been to give our sister site Classic Modern a complete redesign and makeover. We've also been making progress on [read more...]

In memory of Claus Bolby (1944-2011)

Today we heard the sad news that veteran Danish lighting designer and producer Claus Bolby, founder of Cebo Industri and creator of the popular acrylic light series Symfoni and Veega (pictured below), died last night after a long illness [read more...]

A tale of two Topans: the Pendant & the Spot

Verner Panton's futuristic 1959 Topan light design for Louis Poulsen has rarely been out of the limelight in its more than 50 years of existence. Frequently copied and never out of style, the clipped sphere [read more...]

Finn Juhl and the drivers of vintage value

The perceived value (and so the price) of a vintage Danish light is usually fairly closely related to its historical retail price. Broadly speaking, the more expensive the light originally was, [read more...]

Kastrup-Holmegaard’s Havanna series for F&M

The Kastrup-Holmegaard glassworks produced many different individually mouth-blown glass lamps for Fog & Mørup during the 1960s. Today the least well-known of these are the Havanna series, which [read more...]

PH & Panton weren’t just good friends

The family connection between two of the great Danish lighting designers is widely known – indeed, anyone who is aware of Simon Henningsen's work will almost certainly know that he was the the son of Poul Henningsen. But less well known is [read more...]

Jo Hammerborg: a man in the shadows

Jo Hammerborg joined Fog & Mørup as head of design in 1957 and retired in 1980, only a short time before both his own death and the demise of the company. The Hammerborg era was F&M's most successful period – both creatively and [read more...]

Poulsen, Panton and the space programme

On 26 September 1972 in the Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet, journalist Bengt Rooke reported that a 60-strong delegation of American architects and interior designers working on ideas for future space travel and astronauts living in space had consulted Louis Poulsen [read more...]

The price of a gold-plated Fog & Mørup Semi

One of our readers has left a comment on the post we wrote recently about Fog & Mørup's Golden Line, the range of 24-carat gold-plated versions of F&M's Semi, Sektor and Milieu pendant lights. "I have [a Semi], which I call a trumpet lamp, with a diameter of 60cm in 24 carat gold [read more...]

End of an era: the Divan 2 closes

When Copenhagen's Tivoli Gardens opens its gates on 14 April for the 2011 summer season, the doors to one of its oldest and most venerated restaurants, the Divan 2 (pictured below) – for which Simon P Henningsen created the glitteringly multifacted Divan 2 light – will remain closed [read more...]

The PH lighting manifesto part 2

Following on from last week's post, which you can read here, we continue our translation of Bo Bedre's November 1966 feature offering Poul Henningsen's thoughts on lighting the home [read more...]

Poul Henningsen’s lighting manifesto

In November 1966 Danish homestyle magazine Bo Bedre published a feature by Kirsten Bundgaard in which Poul Henningsen offered his thoughts on lighting in the home. We have translated these pearls of wisdom [read more...]

Danlite Inc is Fog & Mørup USA

From time to time it's possible to find vintage lights by a Long Island, New York-based company called Danlite Inc being advertised for sale in the United States. These lights are, however [read more...]

The Senior and the President

In the 1960s Jo Hammerborg designed two table lamps for Fog & Mørup which are easily and often confused. The Senior and the President have much in common, but several differences distinguish them from one another [read more...]

Fog & Morup’s Chrome and Golden Lines

We wrote in an earlier post (which you can read here) about cross-model colour coordination at Fog & Morup under Jo Hammerborg's artistic direction through the 1960s and 1970s, which allowed the consumer to mix and match different models [read more...]

Jo Hammerborg’s rarest F&M light?

One of Jo Hammerborg's earliest designs for Fog & Mørup is also perhaps his most rarely seen and least recognised F&M creation. The Kubus, pictured below in an F&M advertisement published in 1961 [read more...]

Hammerborg’s Tarok & the Schlegel lamp

Fritz Schlegel's classic bell-like light for Lyfa, the Schlegel-lampe, designed in 1938, inspired a number of similar designs with which it is often confused [read more...]

Another diamond-shaped Preben Dal gem

Featured in Danish homestyle magazine Bo Bedre in January 1962 when his Symfoni (final image below) was already on prominent display in Copenhagen's illustrious interior design store Illums Bolighus [read more...]

F&M wall lamp is Helth not Panton

The owner of the pair of lights pictured below thought that they might be a rare wall-mounted version of Verner Panton's Flowerpot. The Fog & Mørup labels present on the lights, however, reveal that [read more...]

Poulsen’s IT lamp and the ghost of PH

In view of their seminal influence both in Denmark and internationally, it is no surprise that Poul Henningsen's ideas on lighting design were guiding the in-house design department at Louis Poulsen even long after his death in 1967. His legacy [read more...]

Fog & Mørup lights in Brio miniatures

In the early 1970s Swedish toy manufacturer Brio Scanditoy Mobilia produced miniature versions of some of the interior design classics of the day for use in furnishing their internationally popular dolls houses. Furniture by Arne Jacobsen [read more...]

More on Utzon and the Søværnspendel

Following our recent piece on the debate about whether Jørn Utzon or the Danish Navy designed the Søværnspendel (which can be read here), we received an interesting email [read more...]

Hvidt & Mølgaard’s F&M light design

Peter Hvidt (1916–1986) and his business partner Orla Mølgaard (aka Orla Mølgaard-Nielsen) (1907–1993) are best known for their furniture – in particular the Ax chair, designed in 1950 for Fritz Hansen [read more...]

Jørn Utzon and the Søværnspendel

The question of who designed the light known as the Søværnspendel has been the subject of much debate in recent years, with opinion divided between those who believe it to be a Jørn Utzon creation and those who say [read more...]

The birth and afterlife of F&M’s Semi

Designed in 1967 by Claus Bonderup and Torsten Thorup when they were still students and put into production by Fog & Mørup, the Semi was an immensely popular light. An article in a 1973 edition of Mobilia magazine described the process by which [read more...]

Frandsen’s Fibonacci needs clear bulbs

Danish architect Sophus Frandsen created the Fibonacci light, his timeless classic for Fog & Mørup, in the early 1960s. Despite being one of the company's most expensive lights [read more...]

Nordisk Solar vs Anvia star lamps

The star-shaped lacquered steel pendant light pictured below seems to embody the space-age style of the late 60s and early 70s, but in fact it was designed for Nordisk Solar Compagni at the beginning of the 1960s by [read more...]

Colour coordination in Danish lights

In the late 1960s both Louis Poulsen and Fog & Morup launched lines of assorted lamp models in coordinated colours under unifying banners. In 1968 and 1969 Louis Poulsen's [read more...]

PH 80 is not a Poul Henningsen design

It is easy to understand why the claim is often made that Louis Poulsen's PH 80 table and floor lamps were designed by Poul Henningsen himself. But they were actually designed by Bent Gantzel-Boysen and [read more...]

The forgotten art of Oluf Gravesen

Danish advertising for items of domestic design in the 1960s and 1970s often followed a very specific format. The featured product would be photographed in a room setting together with items by other manufacturers that were generally considered to be amongst the most prestigious and desirable designs of the time. These secondary items [read more...]

F&M Karlebo is not a PH series light

We have seen the light pictured in the first image below described as being a PH series lamp, designed by Poul Henningsen and made by Louis Poulsen. We have also seen it described as [read more...]

F&M Hekla’s fiery Icelandic connection

It is widely known that Fog & Mørup's mid-1960s Hekla pendant light was created by two furniture designers from Iceland, Petur B Luthersson and Jon Olafsson. The prize-winning Hekla [read more...]

More on Coronell v Hans-Agne Jakobsson

Our previous blog entry on the common but incorrect attribution to Hans-Agne Jakobsson of a range of prism lights which were actually produced by Danish company Coronell (which you can read here) was picked up [read more...]

Hans Due’s Optima was white at launch

Bengt Rooke's Tidsfasetter, a collation of vintage Scandinavian art and design news, includes an item that appeared in Denmark's Ekstra Bladet newspaper on 19 October 1972, reporting on the launch at Fog & Mørup's Copenhagen showroom of [read more...]

How F&M’s Formland avoids dazzle

An early 70s edition of Design from Scandinavia reveals the material that architects Sidse Werner and Leif Alring used to create the light-transmitting but non-dazzling domed tops of their Formland lamp series for [read more...]

Quality System – back from obscurity

From its inception in 1965 until its demise in 1985, Danish lighting company Quality System was hugely successful, and its products, designed by artist Flemming Brylle and industrial designer Preben Jacobsen, sold in the millions [read more...]

The mysterious Danish star light

One of the many vintage Danish lights we count among our favourites is the large (50cm diameter), heavy (3kg) and fearsomely spikey star-shaped fixture pictured below. But its origins are [read more...]

Weisdorf’s Konkylie was made for trees

Louis Weisdorf's extraordinary Konkylie ("conch shell") light was originally designed for Copenhagen's Tivoli Gardens, where it hung from trees in glorious fiery clusters. Like Simon P Henningsen's [read more...]

Piet Hein’s 1969 Ra lamp for Lyfa

Bengt Rooke's Tidsfasetter, a collation of historical art and design news items from Scandinavia, includes a 1969 clip entitled Piet and Lux and Lyfa, which reports on the innovation behind [read more...]

Verner Panton’s Panthella/3-light

When people come across a vintage Panthella for the first time they often think there's something wrong with the on/off switch. "It's not working properly", they say. "I have to step on it twice to bring the light on, and [read more...]

Jo Hammerborg’s Saturn series

One particular group of Fog & Mørup lights by Jo Hammerborg – which for convenience here we will call the Saturn series – embodies Hammerborg's most easily recognised and most [read more...]

Coronell, not Hans-Agne Jakobsson

It has been brought to our attention that, in one of the misinformation feedback loops so common on the internet, sellers on Swedish auction site tradera.com have been in the habit of describing the lights pictured below as [read more...]

Fog & Mørup’s 1969 Rainbow Line

In 1969 four Fog & Mørup light models – Andreas Hansen's Falcon and Jo Hammerborg's Juno, Zone and Equator – were brought together in [read more...]

‘Tivoli’ wall light is by HS, not SH

The designer of the diamond-shaped wall light pictured below is often said to be Simon P Henningsen. Both this raw metal version and another lacquered in black and white are, it is claimed [read more...]

Jo Hammerborg’s Penta is not a PH 4/3

The Penta, pictured below, is a little-known Fog & Morup light designed by Jo Hammerborg and first appearing in the record in 1965. More traditional in form and [read more...]

13 of 100 great Danish designs of 1974

In 1974 a special edition of Mobilia magazine was dedicated to showcasing, as the title of the issue announced, "One Hundred Great Danish Designs!" The 100 featured products were chosen as [read more...]

Secret treasure in the F&M Orient

Few people know that when Jo Hammerborg's Orient pendant light first appeared on the market in the early 1960s, the range included a version of the Orient Minor (far left in the picture below) made of solid [read more...]

The spiral that isn’t a Lyfa Weisdorf

From time to time we see one or other of the two spiral-structured lamps pictured below being attributed to Louis Weisdorf for Lyfa. Usually in these cases no title is given for the light, but occasionally it is claimed [read more...]

Jo Hammerborg’s earliest F&M designs

When Jo Hammerborg joined Fog & Mørup in 1957 he lost no time in transforming the company's product range and bringing it firmly into the modern age. Out went the cumbersome chandeliers [read more...]

The uniquely Danish concept of hygge

From time to time we hear someone in Denmark describing a vintage light – usually one that gives out a warm glow, such as Claus Bolby's Veega (pictured below) – as "hygge", and [read more...]

Jo Hammerborg’s Sera and Dano lights

One of several themes that ran through Jo Hammerborg's work at Fog & Mørup during the 1960s was that lights were often produced in either two or three different metals/finishes – usually aluminium and copper when [read more...]

Jo Hammerborg’s Fog & Mørup Zero light

The multi-cylindrical Zero (pictured below), a classic Jo Hammerborg creation dating from late 1970 or early 1971, is a strong candidate for the title of rarest Fog & Mørup light of the 1960s and 1970s – the "Hammerborg period" that was [read more...]

F&M’s 1970s collaboration with Arabia

In the mid-1970s Fog & Mørup made a brief return to its roots in ironmongery when it embarked upon a collaboration with Finnish company Arabia which embraced several [read more...]

Lyfa’s iF Product Design Awards

The International Forum (iF) Product Design Awards have been presented annually since 1953 to products deemed by an international committee of experts to be of outstanding excellence in design. Several Lyfa lights [read more...]

F&M Orient lookalikes from the UK

The paradigm-changing originality of 1960s and 1970s Fog & Mørup light designs and the high cost of their uncompromisingly top-quality production led to countless cheap imitations. Many copyists [read more...]

Zenith is Hammerborg, not Henningsen

One of the most frequently misattributed Fog & Mørup lights is the Zenith, pictured below, whose designer is often given as Simon P Henningsen, son of [read more...]

Hillebrand, not Bent Karlby for Lyfa

With its structure of concentric metal squares and the light effects produced by the overlapping layers, it is perhaps unsurprising that the red and white wall light pictured in the first two images below is sometimes [read more...]

Ole Panton and the Seks-tre-pendel

One of the more elusive lights produced by Lyfa in the 1960s is the Seks-tre-pendel (pictured below, left), an unorthodox creation by Ole Panton. Born in Fyn, Denmark in October 1938 when his brother Verner [read more...]

Louis Weisdorf, Wiesdorf or Weissdorf?

The name of the Danish architect who in the 1960s designed several lights that are today considered to be amongst Lyfa's most interesting and collectable – including the Turbo, the Facet-Pop, the Ekko, the Multi-Lite [read more...]

Tips for buying vintage Danish lights

Every area of vintage/antique design collecting has pitfalls and dangers, and vintage Danish lighting is no exception. Here's our five-point guide to making sure that your investment is sound and that you're not throwing [read more...]

The Louis Poulsen Bornholmpendel

The Bornholmpendel is rarely seen today, but in 1967 it was chosen by Louis Poulsen to feature on the front cover of its product catalogue (see below). The light was designed [read more...]

Henningsen & Schwalbe’s Kassablanka

Simon P. Henningsen's Kassablanka pendant light was designed circa 1964 for Lyfa, and the lamp's name was derived from its shiny metal exterior – "kassa blanka" being Danish for "shining box". And as Simon's widow Bente [read more...]

The 1970 launch of F&M’s Formland

Bent Rooke's fascinating Tidsfasetter, a collation of art and design news items from Scandinavia stretching back to the 1960s, includes an article on the launch party for Sidse Werner and Leif Alring's [read more...]

Fog & Mørup’s iF Product Design Awards

Initiated in 1953, the International Forum (iF) Product Design Awards are presented annually to products deemed by its jury of international experts to meet the evaluation criteria for outstanding excellence in [read more...]

Preben Dal: mystery man of lights

Just who was Preben Dal? Nobody seems to know anything about the man who designed the wonderful Symfoni series of lights for Hans Følsgaard A/S (see example below, often wrongly attributed to [read more...]

Art and design at Fog & Mørup

Creativity in design was the core value at Fog & Mørup during Jo Hammerborg's reign as head of design from 1957 to 1980. This was reflected in the company's [read more...]

Did Lyfa light the Sydney Opera House?

We know that Lyfa produced the lighting for some important buildings during its existence, including Arne Jacoben's Aarhus town hall – a commission that it won by undercutting [read more...]

A dangerous time for lights

The most perilous time in a vintage lamp's lifecycle starts when it leaves its original home – where the worst it's likely to have suffered is a layer of dust, a few spots of ceiling paint and a coating of [read more...]

Safari is by Hvidt, Hvidt & Mølgaard

Nordisk Solar Compagni's Safari pendant light, pictured below, is often attributed to Jørgen Gammelgaard. But it was actually designed in the 1970s by engineer Christian Hvidt together with [read more...]

Kastor is Hammerborg, not Weisdorf

The lights pictured below have often been attributed to Louis Weisdorf for Fog & Mørup. The truth is that Louis Weisdorf never designed lights for F&M at all, and the lights – entitled [read more...]

Is this why Danes love lights?

With a population of less than 5.5 million, Denmark surely produced more lights per head in the 50s, 60s and 70s than anywhere else in the world. Many were made for export, but vast numbers were [read more...]

Three of a kind

Interesting that Nordisk Solar Compagni, Lyfa and Louis Poulsen have all produced lamps with a very similar shape. The Poulsen version is included in a 1967 catalogue but certainly dates from [read more...]

Verner Panton and LamPetit

Did Verner Panton design Louis Poulsen's versatile LamPetit? Certainly the compact little lamp is unexpected for its 1966 date, looking more like something from the 1980s with its blocky minimal lines and [read more...]

A Bent Karlby mystery

Most fans of vintage Danish lighting know that Bent Karlby designed for Lyfa, creating several of the company's most sought-after pieces including the Påefugl (Peacock) and the Kvadrille. But few know [read more...]

Welcome to vintage danish lights

Welcome to our brand new blog about and directory of vintage Danish lighting! We were inspired to create them by the many mistakes in attribution we see around the internet, and we hope [read more...]
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