Achille Castiglioni, Pier Giacomo Castiglioni,
The floor lamp Toio by Flos is one of the most loved creations of the brothers Achille and Pier Giacomo Castiglioni and best exemplifies their creative process. Masters of ready-made, the Castiglioni loved to reuse existing industrial elements and rearrange them together in a creative way, up to form new and functional objects.
The name of the lamp itself (Toio is a macaronic distortion of English “toy”) reveals the irony and the fun with which the Castiglioni face the project, conceived as a very refined game of joints and matches in which nothing is left to chance. All ingenious construction stratagems are immediately perceptible to the user: the lamp Toio renounces any type of casing, leaving perfectly visible every element that constitutes it.
The project dates back to 1962 and its start point was a car light, ingeniously reinterpreted as a source of domestic light. Pointed towards the ceiling to create a lamp with indirect light, it is supported by a special metal frame consisting of curved rods. This frame is in turn supported by a telescopic stem with hexagonal section, that permits to raise and lower regulating the height. Metal rings run all along the stem, taken from the design of the fishing rods, which hold the electric cable in position in its descent to the base.
The base consists of an open structure in steel painted, available in red, black and white colors. Quadrangular in shape, this structure can be gripped like a handle to move the lamp comfortably. The transformer is positioned in its center, perfectly visible, that assumes also a function of counterweight and gives stability to the lamp. Two feet with “L” shape complete the structure, which raise it slightly from the ground and two slats placed on one side which are used to wind the residual cable when the stem is lowered.
The idea that a car light could be used as a source of light led to the creation of the most famous ready-made of the lighting industry of XX century