Scandinavia Design

Potence & Petite Potence

design Jean Prouvé, 1950

Jean Prouvé created the first version of the Potence wall light fixture for his own house in Nancy in the 1940s: a simple bulb attached to a long steel swivel bar, held by a metal wire. This sleek and functionalist design was quickly produced in different sizes, with an extra handle on larger models to facilitate movement.

Materials Powder-coated tubular steel, beech wood, dimmer cord, bulb included.

L203 x H109 cm

Petite Potence black
L104 x H30 cm

Petite Potence japanese red
L104 x H30 cm

Jean Prouvé

Jean Prouvé completed his training as a metal artisan before opening his own workshop in Nancy in 1924. In the following years he created numerous furniture designs, and in 1947 Prouvé established his own factory. Due to disagreements with the majority shareholders, he left the company in 1953. During the ensuing decades, Prouvé served as a consulting engineer on a number of important architectural projects in Paris.

He left his mark on architectural history again in 1971, when he played a major role in selecting the design of Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers for the Centre Pompidou as chairman of the competition jury. Prouvé's work encompasses a wide range of objects, from a letter opener to door and window fittings, from lighting and furniture to façade elements and prefabricated houses, from modular building systems to large exhibition structures – essentially, almost anything that is suited to industrial production methods.

In close cooperation with the Prouvé family, Vitra began in 2002 to issue re-editions of designs by this great French constructeur.