- Anglepoise lamp
designer George Carwardine.
Carwardine was a motor car designer who applied his engineering skill to build a lamp which mimicked the joints of the human arm. The joints and spring tension allow the lamp to be placed in a wide range of positions and remain stationary without the need for clamping. The original Anglepoise was manufactured by Herbert Terry & Sons in
1934. The design is characteristic of the functional approach to office and domestic design that was dominant in the 1930s.
The design was extensively copied and is still in use today. The arm has been employed in other devices where it is necessary to hold an object stationary at a convenient point in space, notably the copy holder for typists and in some applications, the computer display screen.
In 1948, the Board of Governors of the
BBCasked the head of the Variety Department Michael Standing to devise a guiding set of moral standards and protocols for the production of all BBC radio and television programmes. Standing produced something that became commonly know within the BBC as the ‘Green Book’. The purpose of the book was to eradicate smut, innuendo and vulgarity from all BBC programmes. After producing the book, Michael Standing took to implementing his guidance with eccentric zeal. In June 1949, Standing issued a memo to all staff in which he forbade BBC employees from illuminating any room with an Anglepoise lamp unless the main ceiling or wall mounted light was also illuminated. Standing held a firm belief that a man working at a desk in a confined space with only the light from a low-wattage lamp would nurture furtive ideas and produce degenerate programme material. The Director General Sir William Haleylater rescinded the Anglepoise lamp edict because he thought that the measure was extreme and unnecessary. [ John Birt,The Harder Path (Time Warner Paperbacks, 2003),p.193.]
Balanced arm lamps
* [http://www.designmuseum.org/design/anglepoise The Design Museum] Page on the lamp and its development / history.
* [http://www.anglepoise.co.uk/ www.anglepoise.co.uk] Makers home page
* [http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/cultureshow/designquest/icons/phase4/lamp.shtml BBC Culture Show] Great British Design Quest
Modern Culture References
*"(I Wanna Be an) Anglepoise Lamp" 1978 single by
The Soft Boys.
On Chesil Beachby Ian McEwan. Doubleday Press. Page 136
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