Le Blog – Serge Mouille Lighting

October 25, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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Set The Mood: Serge Mouille Lighting

How powerful is lighting in setting a mood? Check with any movie director and they will tell you it is an extremely important element in movies. It really is not surprising as the movies are for seeing.

The same principles that govern how lighting effects on a movie set apply to your home. Many people view lighting as a necessity, without much thought of to use how lighting as a way to change how we view our milieu. The way we see our surroundings has a huge impact on our mood.

In addition, lighting by major designers such as Serge Mouille allow you to add lighting as art as well as the fixture serving a utilitarian purpose.

 Tips on How Lighting Improves Your Living Space

modern lighting

Lighting your living space is similar to dressing for cold weather – layers are the key to lighting effects. Your home lighting need at least 4 levels:

  • Natural Light
  • Ambient Lighting
  • Accent Lighting
  • Task Lighting

Natural Light

Natural light is great – it is free too. When studying your living space to decide on how to layer, try to use the most natural light you can.

Here are some tips to get the most from the natural light you home receives.

  1. Hang mirrors particularly across from windows
  2. Take down natural light blocking items such as unneeded heavy drapes and change them for gauzy fabrics such as muslin that diffuses light. Use perforated roller blinds to prevent harsh sunlight from streaming in.
  3. Replace an inside door with a glass paneled door or even a door made of clear or stained glass.
  4. Avoid surfaces that soak up the light, use light reflective surfaces instead including pale carpeting and furniture.

Ambient Lighting

Ambient lighting is the lighting that replaces sunlight after dark. Frequently, the main source of ambient lighting are overhead fixtures. These are holdovers from the days when gas chandeliers were in use and often are responsible for problems such as a bland flat lighting effect.

The good news is that accent lighting gives you lots of opportunity to use floors lamps, table lamps and wall sconces to add shading and depth. This is where you use a piece from a lighting designer such as Serge Mouille. He designed some spectacular wall and floor lighting as well as table lamps.

Serge created some elegant standing floor lamps. They feature clean lines that are quite simple. Choices include the single arm and the three arm standing floor lamps which have many uses such as up-lighting, task lighting, and ambient lighting. Other standing lamps some see more as art than lighting – these are his later works called signal lamps that combines fluorescent and incandescent lights. Direct ambient lighting towards things you wish to highlight.

Task Lighting

Task lighting complements your other lighting. It is a grow light for plants, a undercabinet lighting for kitchen work or a reading floor lamp next to a comfortable chair.

Without a lighting plan, the best decor may not show the care that went into its planning. Do not forget the lighting!

October 15, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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Serge Mouille: A History of Craft Lighting

In the middle of the 20th century, interior designers and architects on both side of the Atlantic Ocean created a movement in interior design known as Mid-Century Modern. The designs of that era following World War II had an allure that withstood the test of time and is still popular today. One of the leaders of this movement was a Frenchman named Serge Mouille who crafted the most beautiful lighting fixtures with an innate genius that shone is his carefully crafted pieces. Although Sergio died in 1988 at the age of 66, his captivating illuminations are still in great demand.

Serge Mouille was born in Paris, and part of his whimsical yet functional designs were no doubt influenced by the city he was born and schooled in. He began his career in industrial art as a silversmith, but he had an uncanny way of bending metal to his will – he had this mastery over metal beginning as a young man.

modern lighting

In the late 1940s he transitioned to the world of French Industrial Design. In 1953, he designed his earliest arm lamps in reaction to the ornate sconces and lamps that were coming from Italian artists. Form and function were his interests along with the beauty of clean lines. Where the Italian designs are nearly overwhelming, Mouille’s designs are minimalist and go with every decor. One look at his Spider Lamp explains his love of simplicity.

Mouille graduated the School of Applied Arts in 1941, in 1945 he joined the school as a teacher. Simultaneously he opened his own studio. In 1953, Jacques Adnet, a famous and successful French art deco modernist designer, architect and interior designer hired Serge as a lighting designer – and from then on he spend his life working as a lighting designer.

Throughout the 1950s and early 1960s he won awards and was a sought after designer. Commissions included the lighting at the University in Antony, school in Marseilles and Strasbourg as well as lighting for the Bizarte Cathedral.

Serge Mouille’s designs are as popular as ever. His widow has authorized each year limited edition replicas of his lighting using the methods and materials of his original work. These have worldwide distribution and quickly sellout. The Spider Lamp wall sconces are among the most popular.

October 8, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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Home Office Ligting by Serge Mouille

Working in a home office is a challenge. Sticking a desk in the guest room is not a good idea let alone an ideal one. A home office is where you work from – it is your work space and place of employment. To be productive a home office needs proper work areas with good illumination. Writers, illustrators, computer code writers, and scores more of professionals work from home, at least part of the time.

Where you Work & How You Light are Key to Productivity

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Table or Desk

A key part of a stylish, productive office is a sensible desk. If you have gone totally digital check out a minimalist desk with room for your laptop and mug. On the other hand, if you like to spread out and have piles on your desk, you need a desk large enough to accommodate your work style.

Lighting

Proper lighting is essential to a productive home office. A standing lamp is an excellent choice as it takes up no desk space and positioned for optimal lighting. For those looking for some inspiration (and most of us do) Serge Mouille standing lamps serve well. Mouille (1922 to 1988) studied with the sculptor and silversmith Gilbert LaCroix. Serge Mouille earned a master silversmith diploma from the noted Paris School of Applied Arts where he later taught. While teaching he also opened his own studio for metalworking.

In his studio he designed and handmade chandeliers. handrails, and wall sconces. In 1953 Jarque Adnet hired him to design exceptional lighting. After his death, his widow decided to license his designs so other could enjoy the ownership of his standing lamp.

One condition of reproduction is that the original methods, materials, and molds be used without any changes.

Home office lighting using a standing lamp designed by Serge Mouille serves to inspire the office occupant by its simplicity of design that gets the job done.

October 1, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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Serge Mouille Sconces and Influence

Serge Mouille liked clean lines. He felt that geometric shapes had clean lines and his modern sconces represent his artistic philosophy. Many critics and fans alike refer to his angular multi armed sconces as “insect like.” Arms extend out from the wall base and have the ability for placement at angles. Extended from the base, the arms with their shades resemble large feet of an insect of some sort.

modern lighting

Insects or Practicality

Mouille liked the “insect” design so much, he used it on desk lamps and ceiling lamps in addition to sconces. He designed two, three, five and seven arm wall sconces as well as a far more traditional Eye Wall Sconce.

Not only do the sconce arms extend and bend they also rotate. Each arm of these modern sconces has its own switch to control the light in the end shade.

Why He Did It

He used his clean geometric designs to counter the popular (at the time) heavy and clunky Italian designs that were popular in the mid-29th century. Serge Mouille had a vision of modern lighting fixtures using delicate lines portraying a phenomenal optic existence. Certainly, the popularity of the Two-arm wall sconce give testament to his success.

Today, French craftsman make the modern sconces by hand, using the same materials and molds that Serge Mouille used. Mouille attached the heads with a unique brass joint that allows it to swivel and turn to any setting and hold its place until someone changes its position. Available colors for these lamps are black or white.

Still Being Produced

Artisans make only 600 each year, and stamp and number them. Distribution is worldwide so despite the fact they are in limited production they are somewhat rare.

Serge’s three legged insect wall sconce was not as popular as the two armed one when introduced 70 years ago. Nevertheless, production of the annual limited edition follows the same creative technique and 600 limit of the two-arm pieces and sell just as well today. Also Mouille made and production is ongoing of five and seven-arm modern sconces.

Functional art is growing in popularity especially with people who commit to sustainability.

September 27, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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Choosing Home Lighting: Ceiling Lamps Versus Floor Lamps

Home lighting affects the entire experience of the home. When it is done right, home lighting can give the home a warm and welcoming character, and provide a distinct personality to each room. It can also blend in with home décor so that each space exudes the desired impression. Lamps are an important part of the home because of the light they put out and their design. Ceiling lamps and floor lamps both have a place in most homes.

modern lighting

Each space in the home can have its own character.

A large snail ceiling lamp or five falling arm ceiling lamp can be ideal for a sharp and crisp home office, while a totem floor lamp or signal floor lamp can be the right companion for avid readers who relax in the home library or den. Standing floor lamps in the bedroom corner can provide light before bed during a final check of a person’s smartphone.

Different rooms lend themselves to different types of lamps.

Modern ceiling lamps can be good choices for foyers and hallways to light a large area and make visitors feel welcome. Chandeliers can be elegant choices in formal dining rooms. A cozy living room with a fireplace and a family room with its own natural light from a large window or skylight may be better suited for standing floor lamps to avoid competing with the fire or sun.

Aesthetics are important, too.

The choice of modern ceiling lamps or standing floor lamps affects the overall aesthetics of the space. A room that displays artistic pieces may be better off with several well-placed floor lamps to illuminate specific paintings or objects. For a rec room, a ceiling lamp can unify the entire space, making everyone in the room feel included in the activities.

September 20, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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Mounted Desk Lamps Maximize Work Space

If you want to see your way across the room, you might be perfectly satisfied with grabbing a pack of light bulbs and plain fixtures from your local hardware store, but if you’d rather stop and enjoy the room for a while. you may want to consider the investment of modern design lighting. Modern lighting gives your home as much personality as the furniture you choose, the color you choose to paint your walls, or any artwork you choose to display. Modern lighting design is art, and better yet it’s functional art that serves a purpose beyond esthetics, and it’s something worth investing in.

modern lighting

Desk lamps aren’t just for desks. They can be placed on end tables, bookshelves, dressers, nightstands or any surface where you need your modern design lighting to be flexible and go wherever you need to go at the time. Still, the desk is the typical place for these lamps, but it doesn’t mean your lamps should be typical.

Desk lamps can either sit on top of a desk or temporarily mount onto the side of a desk allowing for more work space. Agrafee Desk Lamps clamp securely onto the side of a desk or other surface and can reach up to 36″ above your work area, allowing you to have full use of your workspace. By having this modern lighting option rise higher than a typical corner desk lamp, you’ll also get the benefit of having the light shine over the entire space, making it easier to see whatever you’re working on. It’s a great modern design lighting option for a computer desk, or general home office or study space for a student.

While the clamp is secure, it can also be removed as easily as it is installed, should you need the lamp in some other area of your home. The Agrafee Pivoting Desk Lamp, pivots in two places rather than just one and the light sits closer to the work area, at 26″. This is a great option for areas where more direct lighting is needed, such as a sewing or craft desk, a design table, or an area where you need to focus.

September 15, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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Efficient Lightbulb Options

Not everyone has the talent to make modern sconces or standing floor lamps that are works of arts. Serge Mouille was an artist who accomplished just that. Mouille was a Frenchman, who earned a master silversmith diploma in Paris from the School of Applied arts. He studied with the renowned sculpture and silversmith Gilbert LaCroix, who he worked for immediately following his graduation in 1941.

modern lighing

In 1945, Mouille opened his studio and began teaching at the School of Applied Arts from which he graduated. His interest in lighting began from many commissions he had for chandeliers and wall sconces. During the 1950s, Mouille’s standing floor lamps and modern sconces incorporated angles. These large pieces resembled insects as many standing floor lamps, and modern sconces had a number of arms with lighting in the ends of the arms. His best-known works from this time are the 1962 “Oeil” lamp, “Flammes” (1954) and “Saturn” (1958). These lamps are genuine mid-century art works that were displayed at the Steph Simon Gallery in Paris.

After the invention of neon tubes in the 1950’s Serge Mouille had an inspiration to design standing floor lamps that combined fluorescent lighting with incandescent lighting. He premiered then at the 1962 Salon for Interior Design and they represent some of his better-known later works. He called this collection the “Colonnes.” These designs are different from Mouille’s earlier works. They are primarily vertical towers without the sharp angles he used a decade earlier.

Serge Mouille died in 1988, but each year his widow allows the casting of 1,000 pieces that sell all over the globe. The original molds, proportions, techniques, and materials go into the making of each numbered piece.

Though the light designs call for standard incandescent light bulbs, these are scarce as they are no longer manufactured or sold in the United States.

The most energy-efficient bulbs all have bases that fit these gorgeous lamps, however, some look better in the pieces as none of lighting diffusers to hide the bulbs.

Energy efficient light bulb options:

  • Compact fluorescent bulbs
  • Clear Halogen
  • LED Bulbs

However, for the most authentic look use either halogen or LED bulbs that have a rounded shape. Clear of frosted energy-efficient bulbs work well depending on where you place the fixture and its intended use.

A Mouille lighting fixture is art that lights up any home.

 

September 8, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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What Your Home Entrance Says About You

Is your home entrance full of shoes, coats and backpacks?

This often overlooked area of your home one of the most important places when you have guests, yet it is easily ignored by homeowners. Your home entrance is the first room guests see. A poorly designed area without modern lighting tells guests that you don’t really care about your living space.

modern lighting

Consider the following changes to make your home entrance more welcoming:

  • Clean up clutter by putting it away in nearby closets.
  • Set up a coat rack.
  • Decorate a small table with one of the beautiful mid century modern lamps available.
  • Provide a storage area for bags and shoes.

As guests enter your home, they will get a first impression of your home quickly. Keep the area as clutter free as you can, and make sure to have good lighting for your guests to safely navigate any stairs. It’s important to make your guests feel welcome, and your home entrance is the first place to start.

As you decorate, keep it symmetrical in your entryway. Even if you have a small space, you can hang pictures on the wall that are evenly spaced. Use the whole space and don’t be afraid to make a big statement.

You can make your entryway more personal by using personal art pieces that you have collected, photographs of family in a variety of frames or with modern lighting that you have discovered.

Your entryway is the chance you have to set the tone of your home, and it’s important to get this right. Welcome guests into your home, and let them see how beautifully you have arranged your living space.

August 28, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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Farewell Summer: Fall 2014 Lighting Trends

Well, we’re finally here. This weekend marks Labor Day, and the end of the summer as we all know it. For many, this can be a someone trying time, as it means back to full-time work days and juggling school, kids, and after school activities. But, we feel it marks a great opportunity to start fresh, and make some changes for the better! This fall, upgrade your home lighting with some of these beautiful modern lighting trends:

Modern Sconces:

A sconce is a great alternative to ceiling lighting. Not only does it serve as a great point of attention on the wall, but the unique light they cast up to the ceilings make for a stunning home addition. Take a look at one of our favorites, the Anthony Sconce, below:

modern sconces

Simple Modern Floor Lamps:

Sometimes, less is more. That’s why we are such big fans of our beautifully designed, clean, simple floor lamps. They add dimension to a room and provide sectional lighting when desired. Take a look at our standing lamp below. It features a long, slender arm supported by an elegant triangular base.

modern floor lamps

This season, transform your home with some beautiful lighting from Serge Mouille! To view our entire selection, visit http://www.sergemouilleusa.com.

August 20, 2014
by Serge Mouille
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Rotating Sconces: Transformational Elegance

The rotating sconce is one of our most sought out pieces of modern lighting. It’s sleek design along with extreme functionality sets it apart from similar pieces and create a high demand. There are many uses for the rotating sconce. Above a long couch and table allows it to serve as a reading light which can be re-located to where one is sitting. It’s long, sleek arms allow it to be a beautiful point of focus in any home’s entrance way. It’s beautiful brass fittings and color options allow it to serve any space, and meet many tastes. Let’s take a stroll through the many rotating sconces which we offer. Please click on the photos to be taken to the product page and learn more:

modern sconces

modern sconces

modern sconces

modern sconces

modern sconces