Most art college students soon become familiar with the works of Surrealist painter René Magritte. So much so that these bowler hat ceiling lights by British designer Jake Phipps are instantly recognisable as being inspired by the renowned Belgian surrealist artist. The bowler hat, now a much missed feature of English street scenes, has been iconic and is portrayed in various paintings, sketches, sculptures and even comic strips such as Tintin.
The bowler hat ceiling lights are actually made from real felt wool bowler hats one can buy in any reputable hat shop. They have then been lined with a protective layer of anodised aluminium and fitted with a light bulb. When placed in an interior space, the bowler hat lamp brings a decidedly unusual and unique flair to the room and undoubtedly catches the eye of any newcomer. The lamp looks great by itself but when positioned in a gathering, or flock, of similar lamps, the bowler hat light can add a dreamscape feel to a space.
René Magritte was one of my favourite artists when I myself was in Art School. The Surrealist movement appealed to my imagination and artistic style, thus becoming a source of inspiration to much of my art and indeed, creative writing. Magritte, more so than many of his peers, was a witty and thought-provoking artist who used what might seem at first simple scenes to convey great philosophical weight. The bowler hat lamps are influenced in particular by his work called ‘The Son of Man’ which was painted in 1964 and was intended as a self-portrait. In it, a man in a bowler hat and suit stands to military-style attention against a backdrop of a simple wall and sea scene. The man’s face is obscured by a large green apple.
You can see more of Jake Phipps’ work on his website found here: Jake Phipps Design.
You can buy one of his lamps from London’s online Tate Gallery shop: Tate Online Shop.