Design & Architecture

Iconic Lighting

Cesta Lamp

The Cesta lamp designed in 1962 continues to be on trend.

Words by Aneesha in Design & Architecture · Apr 1st, 2019

This enchanting, handcrafted lamp has been shaped using traditional steam-bending techniques and is delicately polished and sturdily put together. It consists of a subtle cherry wood structure that holds an opal-shaped, almost egg-like glass shade. Cesta is an excellent object and lamp, perfect for placing on a tabletop or resting on the floor, and the light can be dimmed according to preference. 

This product by Santa Cole is conceptualised and made by the legendary Miguel Mila in 1964. It still continues to be an iconic piece to this day and age. Miguel Milá was born in a Catalan aristocratic family with strong links with the artistic world (his ancestors assigned the Milá House, also known as La Pedrera, to Gaudí), and started working as an interior designer in the architecture studio of his brother Alfonso Milá and Federico Correa. It was the end of the 50s, a time of crisis when Spain hardly knew what industrial design was. There was practically no industry, everything was generally handmade. This framework marked the way Miguel Milá understood design, being sensitive to the pleasure of touching and closer to traditional techniques. 

“I am in reality a pre-industrial designer” said Mila. I feel more comfortable with the technical procedures that allow correcting failures, experimenting during the process, and controlling it to the maximum. That is where my preference for noble materials comes from, the preference for materials that know how to age.” This is the case, among others, of the wooden Cesta lamps (1964), the reed Manila lamp (1961); the M68 lamp, made out of aluminium (1968); or the lamp series Americana with natural linen shades. 

Image & content courtesy of Santa Cole 

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Reprint from The Private Collection magazine 2019.