Modernica puts 1950s George Nelson Net lamp back in the spotlight

Modernica, maker of those beloved George Nelson Bubble lamps, announced that it is bringing back the Bubble's cousin, the Net.

In 1959, the Net Light rolled out to not exactly a fervor. Fewer than 1,000 of the lights were produced before the design slipped into midcentury obscurity. Helping the design's chances for a comeback this time around is a ready market of Nelson devotees and midcentury design fans looking for something a bit different from the now-ubiquitous Bubble.

Whereas the Bubble lamps take their shape from metal skeletons, the Net silhouette emerges when fine netting is stretched over a series of metal rings. A Modernica spokeswoman said both lamps get the same plastic coating, so even though the Net has a different texture, its finished shade is a hard shell, just like the Bubble.

A page from a vintage catalog shows how the Net was designed to be configured with different rings in different ways, but Modernica is selling just one model to start: a 38-inch-tall pendant regularly priced at $525, shipping included. Any future variations in size and shape will depend on customer feedback, the spokeswoman said.

In a bit of nice timing, Los Angeles-based Modernica launches its semi-annual sale Thursday. All products, including the Net light, are 15% off, shaving nearly 80 bucks off the price above.

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