This work, designed by Gallé at the very end of his life, is described as a table lamp intended for the corner of a sitting room. It is fashioned in the shape of the inky cap mushroom, a type of fungus that attains its full growth in one night and then wilts with the coming of the dawn. Here one sees the three stages of growth, proceeding from the first, when the cap is tightly shut, to the last, when it is fully opened. Three layers of glass are used to render the caps: an opaque, cream-colored layer is overlaid with transparent glass, which is then covered with reddish-brown. The surface of each cap is marked with lines. The depiction of the mushroom is based on close observation of the actual object and is quite naturalistic. When the lamp is lit, a brilliant, poisonous-looking red color rises to the surface. This huge mushroom, its life one great, short brush of energy, exerts a kind of strange, mysterious charm.


  • Title: Inky cap lamp
  • Creator: Emile Gallé
  • Date Created: ca.1902
  • Location Created: Japan
  • Physical Dimensions: w314 x h838 cm
  • Object Width (English): 31.4 cm (Diameter of base)
  • Object Title (Japanese): ランプ「ひとよ茸」
  • Object Height (English): 83.8 cm
  • Object Date (English): ca.1902
  • Category (Japanese): ガラス
  • Artist Name (Japanese): エミール・ガレ
  • Type: Glass
  • Rights: Suntory Museum of Art, Suntory Museum of Art

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