Designer Ingo Maurer passed away at the age of 87 and leaves us with many interesting light objects. Lamps just doesn’t really explain what he did.
The story of Ingo Maurer started like a Fairy Tale. In 1932 he was born on the small island of Reichenau, situated in Lake Constance [Bodensee] in the South of Germany. How is that for playing outdoors in your childhood?
After training as a typographer, he studied graphic design in Munich and later worked in New York and San Francisco. In 1966 he settled in Munich and founded his own company.
One of his first designs was called Bulb. It is basically an oversized light bulb. As early as 1969 the design became part of the MoMa collection. His chandelier Porca Misera!, a lamp made up of fragments of porcelain, and Lucellino, a light bulb with wings, have also been included in exhibitions at MoMa. He also designed lamps with tea strainers, Campari bottles, notes or Campbells cans. His ideas were always conceptual and crafted to perfection. Maurer had a showroom in Munich and one in New York.
In later years he became more and more interested in installations. His lighting concepts for two underground stations in Munich are so successful, that they draw tourists from all over the world.
Since there were hardly any photos in the commons of the light art, here you’ll find a small Pinterest board dedicated to Ingo Maurer. May the copyright gods forgive me.
While the pieces of Maurer are generally described as elegant, to me his designs are very brave because they are really close to cross that Kitsch border. What do you think? Art or kitsch?