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Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Organically-shaped, clean-lined and elegantly simple are three terms that well describe mid-century modern American furniture. The style, which emerged primarily in the years following World War II, is characterized by pieces that were conceived and made in an energetic, optimistic spirit by creators who believed that good design was an essential part of good living.

Postwar American architects and designers were animated by new ideas and new technology. The lean, functionalist “International Style” architecture of Le Corbusier and Bauhaus eminences such as Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Walter Gropius had been promoted in the United States during the ’30s by Philip Johnson and others. New building techniques, such as “post-and-beam” construction, allowed the International-style schemes to be realized on a small scale, in open-plan houses with long walls of glass.

Materials developed for wartime use became available for domestic goods and were incorporated into mid-century modern furniture designs. Charles and Ray Eames and Eero Saarinen, who had experimented extensively with molded plywood, eagerly embraced fiberglass for, respectively, pieces such as the La Chaise and the Womb chair. George Nelson and his design team created Bubble lamp shades using a new translucent polymer skin. Harry Bertoia and Isamu Noguchi devised chairs and tables built of wire mesh and wire struts. Materials were re-purposed: the Danish-born designer Jens Risom created a line of chairs that used surplus parachute straps for webbed seats and backrests.

As the demand for casual, uncluttered furnishings grew, more mid-century designers caught the spirit.

Classically-oriented creators such as Edward Wormley, house designer for Dunbar Inc., offered such pieces as the sinuous Listen to Me chaise; the British expatriate T.H. Robsjohn-Gibbings switched gears, creating items such as the tiered, biomorphic Mesa table. There were Young Turks such as Paul McCobb — who designed holistic groups of sleek, blonde-wood furniture — and Milo Baughman, who espoused a West Coast aesthetic in lushly upholstered chairs and sofas with angular steel frames.

As the collection of vintage mid-century modern American furniture on 1stDibs demonstrates, this period saw one of the most delightful and dramatic flowerings of creativity in design history.

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Sputnik Chandelier in Copper and Opaline Glass
Located in Waalwijk, NL
Sputnik chandeliers, opal glass, copper, Europe, 1970s Set of two chandeliers in copper and opaline glass. These sputniks consist of a copper globe with six arms, each with a ligh...
Category

1970s European Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Copper

Modernist Stilkronen Style Oscar Torlasco Gold Crystal Round Chandelier, 1970s
Located in Palermo, Sicily
Modernist Stilkronen Oscar Torlasco gold crystal round chandelier 1970s Italian design. 10 light bulbs e14 max 40 watt each.
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Crystal, Gold Plate

Model N.1943 Max Ingrand Sconce Metal Glass Italy Design Fontana Arte Authentic
Located in Palermo, Sicily
Model N.1943 Max Ingrand sconce metal glass Italy design Fontana Arte authentic.
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Crystal, Metal

Carlo Nason 'Attr' Italian Blown Glass Table Lamp
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Carlo Nason attributed Italian blown glass table lamp with white enameled metal hardware and raspberry and white swirl design. In original condition with wear consistent with age and...
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal

Marcello Fantoni Pair of Superb Ceramic Table Lamps with Chinese Motifs 1950s
Located in New York, NY
Pair of artistically significant ceramic table lamps with finely sculpted Chinese men inside nooks with beautiful glazes, both on etched bronze bases, by Marcello Fantoni, Italy 1950...
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Bronze

Pair of Rattan and Brass Lamps, Italy, 1970s
Located in SAINT-OUEN, FR
Pair of rattan wicker and brass ball table or bedside lamps, nice cane lampshades. Slight height differences du to artisanal work.
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Italian Mid-Century Murano Red Glass Chandelier Gio Ponti Style, 1950s
Located in Traversetolo, IT
Beautiful Italian Mid-Century Modern chandelier with six lights from the 50'. The structure is made of high-quality antique brass and red Murano glass with gold color details. Gio Po...
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Spirale Table Lamp by Angelo Mangiarotti for Candle, 1970s
Located in Rotterdam, NL
Playful “Spirale” table lamp designed by Angelo Mangiarotti and manufactured by Candle, Milano in the 1970s. The switch of the lamp is integrated in the base (see picture 4) and can ...
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal

Pair of Sconces by Tito Agnoli
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Pair of sconces by Tito Agnoli. Designed and manufactured in Italy, circa 1970's. Crystal glass, custom chrome backplate. Rewired for U.S. standards. We recommend one E14 60w maximum...
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Chrome

Graceful Pink and Ice Midcentury Flowers Basket Murano Glass Ceiling Light
Located in Rome, IT
Amazing Mid-Century Modern hand blown Italian flush mount chandelier featuring overlapping crystal flowers, pink and ice, mounted on a webbed white painted frame. Measures: Height...
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Blown Glass

Large Vistosi Pendant, 1960s
Located in Vienna, AT
Rare disc-shaped Vistosi pendant with a large, pale Lilac-colored and cased, glass body. Suspended by a steel wire this large hand blown Murano glass pendant appears to hover in plac...
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Linden Table Lamp with Contemporary Black Linen Shades by Studio DUNN
Located in Rumford, RI
The Linden table lamp features a black linen shade and lamp body, solid hardwood maple base, and brass details. The tabletop fixture references the Classic profiles and angles of Mid...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary American Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Pair of 1950s Giuseppe Ostuni Articulating Wall Lamps for O-Luce
Located in Glendale, CA
Pair of 1950s Giuseppe Ostuni articulating wall lamps for O-Luce. An extremely rare matched pair executed in brass and white painted metal by one of the most refined Italian designer...
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass, Aluminum

Rattan and Wicker Wire Italian Modernist Pendant / Hanging Light, 1960s
Located in Barcelona, ES
Mid-Century Modern woven wicker wire and rattan lantern or pendant ceiling lamp, Italy, 1960s. This cool suspension lamp features a rattan structure with vertical canes accented wi...
Category

Mid-20th Century Italian Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Wire

Pendant Lamps in Opaline Glass and Metal
Located in Waalwijk, NL
Pendant lamps, metal, opaline glass, plastic, Europe, 1970s Minimalist pendant lamps with drop-shaped glass shade. The lamps hang on metal stems that end in a cylindric ceiling fi...
Category

1970s European Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal

Suspension Light by Luci-Cinisello Balsamo
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Suspension Light by Luci-Cinisello Balsamo. Designed and manufactured in Italy, circa 1970's. Fiberglass, rubber, metal. Custom backplate. Original canopy. Rewired for U.S. standards...
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal

Rare Max Ingrand Chandelier for Fontana Arte, c1960
Located in London, GB
Eighteen light chandelier by Max Ingrand for Fontana Arte.
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Chrome

Rare Guiseppe Ostuni Floor Lamp, c1950
Located in London, GB
Elegant two light adjustable floor lamp by Guiseppe Osuni for Oluce Beautiful colours to the shades. One pastel grey the other a pastel yellow.  
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Tortiglioni Wall Lamp Arredoluce Monza Angelo lelii Mid-Century Italian Brass
Located in Palermo, Sicily
Tortiglioni wall lamp Arredoluce Monza Angelo lelii mid-century Italian brass and white glass.
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Angelo Lelii for Arredoluce Three-Armed Floor Lamp
Located in Waalwijk, NL
Angelo Lelii for Arredoluce, floor lamp, brass, metal, Italy, 1950s This iconic floor lamp was designed by Angelo Lelli and manufactured by Arredoluce, Italy in 1950. Duo to its f...
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal, Brass

Josef Frank, Two-armed Wall Light, Brass, Fabric, Svenskt Tenn, Sweden, 1970s
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
A wall light / sconce. Designed by Josef Frank, produced by Svenskt Tenn, Stockholm, Sweden, c. 1950s. Other designers of the period include Paavo Tynell, Lisa Johansson-Pape, Se...
Category

1950s Swedish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Frits Schlegel, Adjustable Pendant Light, Brass, for Lyfa, Denmark, 1967
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
A pendant light designed by Danish architect Frits Schlegel in 1967. Produced by Lyfa. In brass. Stated height includes full drop as illustrated in primary image.
Category

1960s Danish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Large Pendant by Reggiani, circa 1960, Murano Glass and Brass
Located in Vienna, AT
Large Italian brass pendant attributed to Reggiani, circa 1960. The large teardrop shaped diffuser is made of blown Murano glass with countless tiny bubbles - a technique called 'Pul...
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Round Venini Style Big Drops Gold Structure Chandelier Italian Design, 1960s
Located in Palermo, Sicily
Round Venini big drops gold structure chandelier Italian Design, 1960s.
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Gold Plate

Zero Quattro Chandeliers, a Pair
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Zero Quattro chandeliers. a pair, Italy, 1970s. 46 chiseled glass pieces assembled in 3 layers.  
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal, Nickel

Incredible Large Vintage Resin Aquarium Table Lamp
Located in East Hampton, NY
This is an 18.5 x 9 inches block of Resin of an aquarium scene with seahorses, seashells, rocks, etc. Very clean and heavy but 100% vintage. This is mounted on bronze finish base and...
Category

1960s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Midcentury Brass & Black Leather Table Lamp Attributed to Stiffel, a Pair
Located in Plainview, NY
A Mid-Century Modern pair of elegant table lamps attributed to Stiffel. Each lamp is made of heavy solid brass with the column wrapped in black embossed leather matching its original...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Gaia Chandelier, Venexiana, Gismondi Orni Halloween for VeArt, Memphis Style 80s
Located in Tavarnelle val di Pesa, Florence
The Gaia chandelier, in the multicolored version, is one of the emblem of the 80s postmodern style. Very rare to find in this multicolor combination. It was designed by Gismondi for...
Category

1980s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Art Glass, Murano Glass

Pair of 1950s Double Sconces in Opalin Glass by Maison Lunel
Located in Saint-Ouen, FR
Pair of double wall sconces, consisting of a solid brass base, supported by two brass arms of light, surmounted by lampshades in frosted glass. On the base is arranged a tapered varn...
Category

20th Century French Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Homann & Kjær for Louis Poulson Wall Lamps ‘Nyhavn’ in Copper
Located in Waalwijk, NL
Alfred Homann & Ole V. Kjær for Louis Poulsen, wall lamps model ‘Nyhavn’, copper, Denmark, design 1976 The ‘Nyhavn’ wall lamp by Alfred Homann and Ole V. Kjær was designed in 1976...
Category

1980s Danish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Copper

"Nuvola" Suspension Light by Tobia Scarpa for Flos
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Nuvola suspension light by Tobia Scarpa for Flos. Designed and manufactured in Italy, 1962. Enameled metal, resin. Plastic polymer resin applied with spraying technique on to enamele...
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal

Vistosi Gray Murano Glass Disc Chandelier, Italy, 1970s
Located in Rome, IT
Spectacular chandelier by Vistosi made with 48 grey fumé beveled Murano discs a four levels. The cage and armature are original brass. Each glass disk is 6" diameter. There are 13 ...
Category

Mid-20th Century Italian Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal

Mid-Century Space Age Murano Blown Glass Globe Bubble Lamp, Doria Germany 1960s
Located in Saarbruecken, DE
Mid-century Space Age slobe sphere bubble lamp, by Doria Leuchten Germany, 1960s. Blown art glass. perfect vintage condition. 3 bulbs e27.
Category

1960s German Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Art Glass

Greta von Nessen Anywhere Lamp Nessen Studio, Inc
Located in Chicago, IL
Greta von Nessen Anywhere Lamp Nessen Studio, Inc. Anywhere as in hang on the wall or desk/table top 1952 enameled metal, plastic.
Category

1950s American Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal, Enamel

Bruno Karlsson, Vase, Stoneware, Studio Ego, Sweden, 1960s
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
A stoneware vase, executed by Bruno Karlsson in abstract form and highly artistic brown glaze. In his Studio, called "Ego Stengods Atelje". Signed at bottom. Other ceramicists of...
Category

1960s Swedish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Stoneware

Contemporary Handcrafted Ceiling Lamp "Ischys" with Brass Curved Arms by Anaktae
Located in Athens, GR
Contemporary, handmade ceiling fixture model "Ischys" in oxidized brass with 24 curved arms, in two different lengths, with light source on either end. The light source consists of ...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Greek Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Hans-Agne Jakobsson Chandelier Model 'T746/8' in Brass
Located in Waalwijk, NL
Hans-Agne Jakobsson, T 746/8 chandelier, brass, glass, Sweden, 1960s Hans-Agne Jakobsson designed this chandelier with eight cylindrical lightbulbs paired on a line. The brass ref...
Category

1960s Swedish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Large Gilded Palm Leaf Murano Glass Wall Lights
Located in Miami, FL
Pair of large palm leaf form Murano glass wall light Gilded glass Spectacular warm beam of light Wired to the American standard. Located in our store in Miami ready for shipping....
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Blown Glass

Bruno Karlsson, Vase, Stoneware, Studio Ego, Sweden, 1960s
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
A stoneware vase, executed by Bruno Karlsson in abstract form and highly artistic brown glaze. In his Studio, called "Ego Stengods Atelje". Signed at bottom. Other ceramicists of...
Category

1960s Swedish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Stoneware

Mid-Century Modern Brass and Blue Vintage Floor Lamp, Vienna, Austria, 1950s
Located in Vienna, AT
Mid-Century Modern vintage floor lamp from brass tube designed and manufactured in Vienna, Austria, 1950s. While the brass tube stem is partly wrapped with white plastic string as h...
Category

Mid-20th Century Austrian Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Swedish Designer, Floor Lamp, Brass, Bamboo, Rattan, Sweden, 1950s
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
A floor lamp. By unknown Swedish designer, 1950s. Brass rod and base. Assorted vintage lampshade in bamboo and rattan.
Category

1950s Swedish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Joe Pendant Lamp 640 by Wende Reid
Located in Paddington, NSW
Joe pendant lamp 640 This Classic, tailored, double pendant lamp, inspired by menswear is reminiscent of 1940s style and the early simplicity of Art Deco. Now also available as a fl...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Australian Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass, Copper

Kalmar Wave Ice Glass Table Lamp, 1970s
Located in Antwerp, BE
Large vintage mid-century table lamp, 1960s. Modernist wave-like design in textured clear and white glass designed by Kalmar. Dimensions: 45 W x 15 D x 38 H cm.
Category

1970s Austrian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Art Glass

Murano Glass Ceiling Pendants, a Pair
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Murano glass ceiling pendants, a pair Italy 1960s.   
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Stilnovo Floor Lamp White and Red Metal Lampshades Brass Marble, Italy, 1955
Located in Catania, IT
Floor lamp manufactured by Stilnovo in Italy, 1955. The floor lamp has a circular white marble base, black lacquered metal steam. The floor lamp has two brass arms and one white an...
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Marble, Brass, Metal

Paavo Tynell Pendant Lamps in Perforated Brass for Litecraft Mfg Corp, Set of 4
Located in Dallas, TX
Priced per pendant. Paavo Tynell for Litecraft Manufacturing Corporation. Set of four pendant lamps with etched glass diffusers embellished with brass leaf ornamentation. The d...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Palwa Gilt Brass and Crystal Chandelier
Located in London, GB
A good quality ceiling light in gilt brass and crystal by German manufacturer Palwa, design attributed to Gaetano Sciolari.
Category

Late 20th Century German Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Crystal, Brass

White Opaline Glass Vintage Mid-Century Pendant Lights
Located in Amsterdam, NL
Opaline glass industrial Bauhaus pendant. Weight 1.0 kg / 2.2 lb Priced per individual item. All lamps have been made suitable by international standards for incandescent ligh...
Category

Mid-20th Century German Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Glass, Opaline Glass, Milk Glass

Pair of Red Arlus Wall Lights, 1950
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Wonderful pair of red enameled French double cone wall lights by Arlus, with pivoting shades on articulate brass arms, perforated along the bottom edge, wired for US standards, one E...
Category

1950s French Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal, Brass

Mid Century Domed Pendant Chandelier by Lightolier
Located in Cincinnati, OH
A nice cleanly designed mid century domed pendant chandelier with matching metal concentric louvered shade which snaps in for easy bulb changing for the double light socket. Having p...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal

Spiral Cascading Chandelier with Glass Shades, Italy, 1960s
Located in New York, NY
Italy, 1960s Sculptural cascading chandelier with five deeply cast stepped glass shades encased in colored enameled metal frames, polished brass mounts. Measures: 12 Ø x 50 H Rewi...
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Glass

White Gesto Marble Arch Floor Lamp by Bruno Gecchelin for Skipper, 1975
Located in Rotterdam, NL
Gesto floor lamp by Bruno Gecchelin for Skipper. The model has a characteristic and extremely heavy marble base and an elegant tubular double arch that ends in a white reflector....
Category

1970s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Marble, Metal, Metal

Fontana Arte Mid-Century Modern Italian Dahlia Sconces by Max Ingrand, Set of 5
Located in Cerignola, Italy Puglia
To be taken into consideration, five Dahlia wall lights by Max Igrand for Fontana Arte, Italy, circa 1950s. Bronze and artistic glass. Excellent original vintage condition, not resto...
Category

1950s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Black Metal & Glass Pair of Flush Mount Ceiling Lamps by BEGA, 1960s Germany
Located in Hagenbach, DE
BEGA 2659 black metal & glass wonderful mushroom design pair of flush mount ceiling lamps - 1960s Germany Sculptural very elegant rare design flush mounts. Minimalist design. ...
Category

1960s German Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Metal

Klase Höganäs, Table Lamp, Glazed Stoneware, Rattan, Sweden, 1950s
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
A table lamp by Klase Höganäs. In stoneware with simple incised decor. Signed. Dimensions stated exclude lampshade. Height includes socket. Vintage rattan lampshade of illustrate...
Category

1950s Swedish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Stoneware, Rattan

Pair of Diamond Translucent Green Glass Table Lamps, in Stock
Located in Miami, FL
Pair of faceted diamond table lamps, in stock Studio-made heavy solid rock translucent Murano glass Green hue Custom made parchment shades included. Located in our store in Miami...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Italian Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Brass

Carlo Nason Two-Tier Cascade Ice Glass Chandelier
Located in Chicago, IL
Carlo Nason "Cascade" chandelier for Mazzega, circa 1960s, Italy. Two-tier waterfall chandelier with 39 thick hand blown and shaped ice glass crystals in three different lengths. Cry...
Category

1960s Italian Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Chrome, Steel

Klase Höganäs, Table Lamp, Glazed Stoneware, Rattan, Sweden, 1950s
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
A table lamp by Klase Höganäs. In glazed and painted stoneware with simple incised decor. Signed.  Dimensions stated exclude lampshade. Height includes socket. Vintage rattan lam...
Category

1950s Swedish Vintage Mid-Century Modern Lighting

Materials

Stoneware, Rattan