Christian Dell was a German silversmith and designer, born in Offenbach am Main, Hesse, in 1893. From 1922-1925, he worked as a foreman of the metal workshop in Bahaus University, Weimar, at a time when Germany's defeat in World War I, the fall of the German monarchy and the abolition of censorship under the new, liberal Weimar Republic, allowed an upsurge of radical experimentation in all the arts previously suppressed by the old regime. It was during Dell’s time at Bahaus that he became significant for his highly innovative and pioneering style of design.
In 1926 Dell moved to Frankfurt to head the metalworking workshop at the Frankfurter Kunstschule National University of Fine Arts. There, he began sketching a great deal of lighting and launched his career as a lighting designer. Stand out designs from this period include the Rondella and Polo Popular desk lights.
The Nazi Party dismissed Dell from his post in Frankfurt 1933, at which time a former employer offered him a job in America. However, Dell chose to remain in Germany to work for the lamp factory Kaiser & Co. This company mass-produced his most renowned design- the 6631 Luxus Table Lamp Model, for the KAISER Idell series, which helps to realise the beauty of the highly innovative and pioneering Bauhaus Movement.
Notably, many of Dell’s lighting designs incorporate his own name into their titles. “Idell” is a blend of the word idea and the designer’s surname.
The 6631 Luxus Table Lamp soon became the undisputed top model of the KAISER idell™ series. Then, as well as today, it was the symbol of noble Germanic design, exquisite choice of materials and precise engineering.
After World War II, Dell manufactured silver goods and opened a jewellery shop in Wiesbaden in 1948, which he operated until 1955. He died in Wiesbaden in 1974.