Artemide Boalum

Boalum Lamp
Gianfranco Frattini and Livio Castiglioni
Artemide 1970

The seriously tripped out Boalum is an icon of modern Italian lighting design. The space age Boalum lamp was created by Gianfranco Frattini and Livio Castiglioni for Artemide in 1970. Shaped like a Boa Constrictor, Gianfranco Frattini and Livio Castiglioni said about Boalum "The Boalum can be used in 1000 different ways, the only limitation is your own imagination!" During the groovy 1960s and early 1970s, many Italian design creations were designed with sweeping motion and erotic undertones.  Boalum definitely fits that category.  In 1970, when clothing was still optional (at least in Italy), it was custom to organize a Tupperware party and have all your guests wrap themselves with these lamps, in the nude.  It was even rumored that this lamp was often used at Studio 54 and New York's infamous Plato's Retreat for back up lighting.  Lucky you (or unlucky perhaps); those parties seem to be over for now.  Artemide ceased production on Boalum a few years ago citing "irreconcilable differences" and declined further comment.

The Boalum lamp in the permanent exhibit at the Musee Des Arts Decoratifs De Montreal, Montreal and the permanent exhibit at the Museo Del Design Italiano, Milan Triennale. We would love to have it back in production...but don't read too much into this request.