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Midgard writes design history: flexible lightings for table, wall or machine, brochure ca. 1925

The name Curt Fischer (1890-1956), founder of the company Midgard, is one of the lesser known names in the history of early 20th century design; nevertheless, with his positionable lights, Fischer was a pioneer of the period and his designs inspired, for example, Bauhaus director Walter Gropius and the school. A month before its opening in Weimar in 1919, Fischer founded the company Midgard as a sub-company of the IWA (Industriewerks Auma) in his hometown Auma in Thuringen. Curt Fischer had very pragmatic reasons for this step: to produce precise tools and machine parts for his industrial plant, excellent light was required. As the inventor of positionable light, Fischer developed a new light culture: innovative, multifunctional, movable lights. He pulled the rigid light sources from the ceiling of the factory halls and fastened them to the wall, table and machine. As incandescent bulbs became an affordable technology, Fischer promoted his adjustable lamps, which were energy-efficient and glare-free and even withstood the machine's vibrations in their inclined position. Light could now be directed exactly where it was needed.

Focused work in the architecture office thanks to adjustable lighting from Midgard

100 Years of Positionable Lighting

Brisk letter contact between Curt Fischer and Walter Gropius shows the latter's fascination and conviction of the "special lighting equipment Midgard". In his Dessau Master house, which was furnished in 1926 by Marcel Breuer, Fischer's innovative lamp No. 113 took a special place in the living room. Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and other leading Bauhaus representatives conceived the famous Weissenhof estate in Stuttgart in 1927 and installed various Midgard lamps in the show flats, while at the Art Deco exhibition in Paris, Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer and Lázló Moholy-Nagy staged their "Section Allemande", in which Midgard was also exhibited. As a result, Midgard lighting could be found in numerous offices and apartments by architects and designers, including Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Egon Eiermann, Hannes Meyer and Hans Wittwer, and at the Bauhaus. The ADGB Federal School in Bernau near Berlin was planned in the planning office of the Bauhaus under Midgard lamps and their reading room was equipped with the model no. 113.

The Midgard lamp No. 113 in a show home furnished by Marcel Breuer in the Weißenhofsiedlung Stuttgart, 1927

Original Logo, Midgard founder Curt Fischer, inventor of positionable light and part of the German design history

Overview of the Midgard lights

In 2015, Joke Rasch and David Einsiedler acquired the insolvent company, brought it to Hamburg and thus delighted friends of vintage design around the world. To this day, the design classics K831 and the spring balanced table lamps are still being manufactured with original tools and thus continue the history in terms of functionality, quality and design in the sense of Curt Fischer.

The K831 with its swivelling lampshade provides focused light wherever it is needed

Midgard table and floor lamps with spring balancer stand for modern flexible lighting

The K831 can be perfectly combined

More about 'midgard' in our blog

100 Years of Positionable Light @ the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe Hamburg

"In many workshops and offices it is regularly attempted to achieve both direct and semi-indirect lighting by means of large, single, light sources, that is, to work only with ample general lighting. Yet as pleasant as this type of lighting may be, in many...

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