Poul Henningsen’s ‘The house of the future’ ceiling light, 1959 sold for £193,250 at the Important Nordic Design sale, 12 November 2011, London.
This work was designed by the Danish master of light, Poul Henningsen, for an exhibition entitled ‘House of Tomorrow’ in Forum in Copenhagen in 1959. The pendant was part of an interior that Poul Henningsen designed in collaboration with Ole Helweg and Torsten Johansson. The model is based on his famous ‘Artichoke’ pendant, which he designed for the Langelinie Pavillon in Copenhagen in 1958. The fluorescent pendant, however, appears as a much more radical experiment. Poul Henningsen is recognized for his experimental and scientific approach to the diffusion of artificial light in a interior. The pendant for the ‘House of Tomorrow’ is composed of yellow, red and white lamp shades. By means of a fluorescent tube, He obtained an interplay of colours that is revealed in the dark; the light emanating from the yellow and red lampshades becomes fluorescent and the light from the white shades appears blue when reflecting the ultraviolet light. When placed in a dark room, the pendant appears as a floating light sculpture. The pendant was made exclusively for the exhibition in 20 copies by Louis Poulsen.