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  • Design
    Dawson, Nelson Ethelred, born 1859 - died 1941
  • Enlarge image


  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    circa 1904 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Dawson, Nelson Ethelred, born 1859 - died 1941

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pencil and watercolour

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level C, case MB2D, shelf DR81, box SS59

Electric lamps had no precedent styles to inform their look and so offered designers the opportunity to create an original form for this new source of light. Without the danger of a naked flame, electric lamps did not need the same type of shades as candles, oil lamps or gasoliers and so at first they appeared rather naked in contrast.

As can be seen here, the designer was attempting to accommodate the flex and fittings while keeping the whole effect elegant. With the flower-like exposed bulbs and tendril-shaped metal fittings, the designer is drawing on plant forms much in the style of Art Nouveau.

Physical description

Design for a lamp

Place of Origin

England (made)


circa 1904 (made)


Dawson, Nelson Ethelred, born 1859 - died 1941

Materials and Techniques

Pencil and watercolour

Descriptive line

Designs for electric lamps for the Library, Butts Close, by Nelson Ethelred Dawson, c. 1904.

Subjects depicted





Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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