Horse Lamp: Moooi

Curator: Kevin Budelmann and Yang Kim
date: July 14, 2011
Categories: Entertainment Design

Leave it to Moooi to do something so crazy and brilliant. It’s big, it’s black, and it’s a lamp.

It was May 2011 when we first saw it. We were attending the HD Expo show in Las Vegas for a client. Walking through that huge exhibition hall, pop-up booth after pop-up booth started to run together. There were some cool things and some very uncool things, but then one thing caught our eye and stayed on our minds long after the show was over: a giant horse lamp.  

Yes. A horse lamp. We fell in love with it right away and had to convince ourselves that we didn’t absolutely need one.

What you first have to know about this horse lamp is that it is life-size. At nearly 8 feet tall, it stood out—even across the busy exhibition hall. But unlike an actual horse, the Moooi horse lamp comes with a lamp shade on its head. It was the best thing we’ve seen in a long time. 

Our 3D studio professor would always frown upon us for designing an object that served two purposes. For example, someone designed a clock that was also a table. That was a big no-no. A truly pure design would only serve one master. This idea is still true today. (Think about that killer app you love that does only one thing, but does it really, really well.) However, the Moooi horse lamp does a variety of things that at first seem completely extraneous to its basic function.

As a lamp, it is a very useful object. Everybody needs lamps. But as a piece of art, it’s cheeky, memorable, naughty, and totally unexpected. In the end, all this other stuff actually does serve a singular purpose: It makes you want it. And that’s just brilliant design.
  • Logical Things

    “Brilliant” is a bit heavy handed, isn’t it?

  • Dave Downer

    I want one, but where would a mare mortal like my self put it.

  • Julia Gudjonsson

    Oh really?

  • Sevell

    If there was a saddle on its back and you could sit there and read.. now THAT would make it useful! Not comfortable, but useful.

  • J. Jones

    The applied arts of the nouvelle bourgeoisie. Crazy and brilliant: How a design shop took income inequality and transformed it into status symbols for the well-to do. The more we become unemployed, the more millionaires take their place in the front row of Mooi for their interior shopping. The horse lamp is more than useful; it should be the 21st century emblem of executive pay gone skyward, of banking without strings, of the “Dutch sandwich” and the tropical tax haven that is Zuidas in Amsterdam.

  • Mr. Thomas

    I like this!

  • Deagan

    I like!

  • C. Chone

    I just love this design. Brilliant. Genius. Love love love love love. So great. Great! Did I say Genius already? Favorite designers. So good.

  • Liu Clee

    So liking this.

  • Sophie

    Oh, what a cute horsie. I like it!

  • Cailin63

    Whoa, horsey.

  • Shin Izle

    I love this!

  • Bloin

    Ich habe nie sowas gesehen!

  • Richard

    For want of a horse, a wallet was emptied.

  • Nic348

    Hmmm!! You really LIKE THIS??

  • BT

    Looks like something you’d see in your great grandmother’s house as a small child and have nightmares about for years to come.

  • gngcreative

    That is monumentally (pun intended) stupid, not to mention grotesque and tasteless. I’d classify it as the high end equivalent of a plastic garden gnome.

  • Christmaself1987

    Where can I buy one?.. Really.

  • Vidaloca

    does it move?

  • WarHorse

    I don’t understand how this is brilliant. We’ve been there done that. The horses that eventually lead to the company Breyer models were originally designed to be part of lamps and clocks. At least this guy isn’t a complete ripoff of one of those models like I’ve seen so many times. 

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