David Irwin gives 19th century mining lamps a modern edge

David Irwin gives 19th century mining lamps a modern edge
The ‘M Lamp’, by David Irwin and Brooklyn-based manufacturer Juniper, has evolved over the years
(Image credit: press)

British designer David Irwin and Brooklyn-based manufacturer Juniper joined forces back in 2011 on the ‘M Lamp’, a piece inspired by 19th century mining lamps. They have since launched newer, more versatile versions, giving the historical model a new lease of life.

Irwin’s portfolio includes seating for Case Furniture, and wooden bookcases and tables for Heal’s. It is his well-rounded design expertise that informed this inaugural lighting project.

The Newcastle-based designer was inspired by the ‘Geordie’, ‘Davy’ and carbide acetylene gas lamp models invented between 1815 and the 1890s, which were used to light up buildings and as headlights for cars and bikes. A portable version of these lamps was used for mining in the 20th century. The M Lamp’s design pays homage to these utilitarian tools, reconstituting them as tools for modern life.

The latest version, dubbed ‘M2’, features a movable lamp head, integrated rechargeable battery (which can last up to 2,000 charge cycles and 60 hours per charge) and sleek, refined lines. The lamp is made from powder-coated high-grade aluminium available in five colour options including orange, white and matte black. Two metallic versions in polished copper and polished chrome reference the original designs, while the lamp itself boasts environmentally friendly credentials due to its low energy consumption and recyclable material.

‘Over time, even the greatest tools and technologies give way to a new generation of invention,’ explains Juniper founder Shant Marjarian. ‘But they continue to live on as icons of our collective memory and through their influence on human progress.’

David Irwin gives 19th century mining lamps a modern edge

Inspired by acetylene gas lamp from the 19th century, the ‘M2’ has a moveable head and an integrated rechargeable battery

(Image credit: press)

David Irwin gives 19th century mining lamps a modern edge

The silhouettes are available in a variety of colourways

(Image credit: press)

David Irwin gives 19th century mining lamps a modern edge

Two metallic versions in polished copper and polished chrome reference the original design

(Image credit: press)

INFORMATION

For more information, visit the Juniper website (opens in new tab)

Rosa Bertoli was born in Udine, Italy, and now lives in London. Since 2014, she has been the Design Editor of Wallpaper*, where she oversees design content for the print and online editions, as well as special editorial projects. Through her role at Wallpaper*, she has written extensively about all areas of design. Rosa has been speaker and moderator for various design talks and conferences including London Craft Week, Maison & Objet, The Italian Cultural Institute (London), Clippings, Zaha Hadid Design, Kartell and Frieze Art Fair. Rosa has been on judging panels for the Chart Architecture Award, the Dutch Design Awards and the DesignGuild Marks. She has written for numerous English and Italian language publications, and worked as a content and communication consultant for fashion and design brands.