“The main purpose of my work is to provoke people into using their imagination,” Verner Panton once said. The late Danish designer’s forward-looking visions often led him to experiment with a variety of uncommon materials, especially plastics, and he never shied away from vibrant colors. His most famous designs, such as the swooping Panton Chair and mushroom-shaped Panthella Lamp, were unlike anything created by his Scandinavian contemporaries in the 1960s and ‘70s. Decades later, both objects still stand alone as sculptural statement pieces, enlivening interiors with their graceful contours and expressive, slightly exaggerated forms.
Panthella, which Panton first developed for Louis Poulsen in 1971, turns 50 this year. To celebrate the milestone, the storied Danish lighting manufacturer is relaunching the table lamp this spring in a new medium size—in between the Panthella Table 400 and the Panthella Mini—and metal finish. Now available in a high-luster chrome shade in addition to standard white opal acrylic, the new finish stuns, proving that Panton’s signature shapes succeed regardless of the material.
Besides commemorating a major anniversary, Louis Poulsen aims for the relaunch to bring an unexpected dose of Danish design ingenuity to interiors of all types. “Good design, to Panton, was not to be reserved for the wealthy, but made accessible to the mass market,” says brand manager Ghazar Kolian, who notes that Panton’s work speaks a universal language, defies time, and reflects his vivid personality. “He was familiar with the habits and the needs of the ordinary person.”