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American Decorative Arts
Designer: Walter Von Nessen, American, born Germany, 1889–1943
Manufacturer: Nessen Studio, Incorporated, American, founded 1927

Standing Floor Lamp

ca. 1928

Brushed chromium over brass, iron

67 × 13 1/2 in. (170.18 × 34.29 cm)
base: 12 3/4 in. (32.4 cm)
other (Top): 13 1/2 in. (34.3 cm)
Enoch Vine Stoddard, B.A. 1905, and Marie-Antoinette Slade Funds
Borrowing techniques of indirect lighting from theater designers, German immigrant Walter Von Nessen designed this lamp to create dramatic illumination in which light would reflect off the ceiling. In 1928 chromium was still luxurious and technologically sophisticated for both designers and consumers. The series of ornamental metal disks on this lamp employ a shape and decorative rhythm suggestive of the modern age of machinery.
Made in New York, New York
On view
20th century
Lighting Devices

Alan Moss Studios, New York, by 1981


Karen Davies, At Home in Manhattan Modern Decorative Arts, 1925 to the Depression, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1983), 79, no. 59, ill.

“Acquisitions 1982,” Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin 39, no. 1 (Winter 1984): 57, ill.

Eva Weber, Art Deco (London: Brompton Books, 1989), 80, ill.

Handbook of the Collections, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1992), 119, ill.

Wayne Craven, American Art: History and Culture (Boston: McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1994), 416–17, fig. 28.6.

Susan Sternau, Art Deco: Flights of Artistic Fancy (New York: Todtri Productions Limited, 1997), 78, ill.

John Stuart Gordon et al., A Modern World: American Design from the Yale University Art Gallery, 1920–1950 (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2011), 101, no. 59.

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.