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26 April 2021
A lamp in which irony and design depth coexist in surprising harmony
The Snoopy lamp was designed in 1967 by Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni: over 50 years ago, therefore, but still today it remains the most surprising example of a project in which refined materials and engineering coexist harmoniously with an ironic design. The Castiglioni brothers, masters in declining lightness in a rigorous and functional way, were inspired, for their shapes, by the character of Snoopy, the little dog with its round snout is taken up in the profile of the lamp that is so familiar. But at the same time refined, and this is the most surprising aspect: a comic that becomes elegant, a step that only those who handle design with experience can successfully complete, without falling into caricature or childishness. Because Snoopy is not a toy lamp, but a real lighting icon, suitable for elegant and professional contexts, as well as domestic and informal.
In this operation, the choice of materials is crucial: the base is in marble, a cylindrical column with small dimensions and slightly inclined towards the back to ensure greater stability. A transparent crystal disk is fixed on the marble column and, finally, an aluminum cap with a hole in the upper part to allow cooling. The switch is located on the marble base.
The asymmetrical shape plays with the perception of the observer, surprising the balance of an oblique base on which a large but light element is placed and the three holes on the top are reminiscent of the grip of a bowling ball. The theme of the game returns with which the Castiglioni brothers seem to want to transport us to a carefree and familiar dimension, which is the universe of Schulz, creator of Snoopy and his simple and immediate world, far from the complexity of reality.
The Snoopy lamp, therefore, not only performs the technical function of illuminating but also the social function of taking the user by the hand and allowing him to free himself, for a moment, from the worries of everyday life, bringing a smile and making his existence lighter.
And this is how an icon is born, perhaps, going beyond the function and transforming the formal setting into a pretext for interacting with the user on a level that goes beyond the switching on / off of the lamp itself.
This approach is found in the Snoopy White Special Edition born from the collaboration of Mohd and Flos to celebrate the recently reached 50 years of life. The special edition, in full coherence with the pleasantly subversive approach of the Castiglioni brothers, comes with a chromatic inversion: the base is in black marble and the lampshade is in opal white. This version adds to the original and to the versions with orange lampshade and green lampshade: eye-catching and lively create an elegant and sculptural focal point.
Snoopy has remained faithful to itself over the years and moreover retains a great versatility of use. Perfect on a desk as well as on a console, it is an interesting and refined choice also for bedside tables. It is suitable for both domestic and professional contexts precisely because it represents a perfect balance between irony and rigor.
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