When it comes to iconic lighting design, the Lampada Flos Toio is certainly at the top of the list. This iconic lamp was designed by Italian architect and designer Achille Castiglioni in 1962 and is still coveted by design enthusiasts and collectors all over the world. Its unique shape, precise construction, and innovative use of materials make it a true masterpiece that continues to stand the test of time.

Design Concept

The Lampada Flos Toio is known for its distinctive shape and design, which is inspired by the functional and aesthetic properties of a traditional car headlight. Castiglioni’s aim was to create a lamp that would provide both direct and indirect light, with a style that was both modern and timeless.

The lamp’s structure consists of a thin steel stem, which is supported by a solid base made of a cast iron transformer. The transformer not only provides stability but also helps to diffuse the heat produced by the bulb. The lampshade is made of a perforated metal mesh, which allows light to filter through and creates a unique pattern of light and shadow.

Materials and Construction

The Lampada Flos Toio’s innovative use of materials and construction techniques was one of the key factors that made it a design icon. Castiglioni’s attention to detail and his desire to create something unique led him to experiment with different materials, such as steel and iron, which were not commonly used in lighting design at the time.

The lamp’s stem, for example, is made of a steel tube that was originally used for heating radiators. Castiglioni noticed this material in a factory and was inspired to use it as the main structural element of his lamp. The perforated metal mesh that forms the lampshade was also an innovative choice, as it adds an element of texture and interest to the overall design.


One of the Lampada Flos Toio’s most appealing features is its versatility and functionality. The lamp is able to provide both direct and indirect light, thanks to its unique design and construction. The perforated metal mesh that forms the lampshade allows light to filter through, creating a diffused glow that illuminates the surrounding area.

The lamp is also adjustable, with the height of the stem and the angle of the lampshade able to be adjusted according to the needs of the user. This makes it a perfect choice for a variety of settings, from a desk lamp to a floor lamp in a living room or bedroom.

Legacy and Influence

The Lampada Flos Toio’s legacy as a design icon is well-deserved. Its innovative use of materials and construction techniques, as well as its distinctive shape and functionality, have made it one of the most iconic lamps of the 20th century. It has inspired countless imitations and adaptations, but none have been able to match its timeless elegance and innovation.

The Lampada Flos Toio continues to be produced by the Italian lighting company Flos, and remains in high demand among design enthusiasts and collectors. Its influence can be seen in countless lighting designs that have come after it, as designers continue to be inspired by its simple yet innovative design.


The Lampada Flos Toio is truly a design masterpiece that stands the test of time. Its unique shape, innovative use of materials, and versatile functionality make it a perfect example of the modernist design movement that emerged in the mid-20th century. It is a lamp that continues to inspire designers and collectors all over the world, and will no doubt continue to do so for many years to come.

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