Table lamp

designed 1927–28; made 1927–31
Designed by Donald Deskey (American, 1894–1989), Manufactured by Deskey-Vollmer, Inc. (active 1927–1931)

Object Place: New York, New York


Overall: 33 x 11.1 x 13.3 cm (13 x 4 3/8 x 5 1/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Silverplated brass, glass, electrical fittings

On View

John Axelrod Gallery (Gallery 326)




Lighting devices

The base is composed of a silver-plated brass rectangular box, with three rising “steps,” with pointed, triangular edges, cut into the front edge. The box is topped by a smooth, flat platform. The flat spine of the lamp stands perpendicular to the base, and supports three congruent triangular boxes, stacked vertically, each of which houses a lighting element. Each triangular casing has a flat, silver-plated top and sides, and is cut back towards the spine of the lamp at a 45° angle to reveal each bulb, hidden behind a frosted glass plate. When lit, the lamp illuminates downwards, while the reflective surfaces of base and the tops of the lower two triangular boxes reflect indirect light back up into the room.


By 1987, owned by Fifty/50 (gallery), New York, New York; 1987, sold by Fifty/50 to John Axelrod, Boston, Massachusetts; 2008, given by John Axelrod to the MFA at part of The John Axelrod Collection (Accession Date: December 17, 2008)

Credit Line

The John Axelrod Collection