The industry designer Ingo Maurer was born on the Island of Reichenau, Lake Constance, Germany in 1932. He trained as typographer in Germany and in Switzerland. From 1954 to 1958 he studied graphic design in Munich. In 1960 Maurer went to the United States of America, where he worked as a freelance designer in New York and San Francisco. In 1963 Maurer returned to Germany and in 1966 he founded "Design M" in Munich, a firm specializing in producing lighting and developing lighting concepts.
Inspired by the Pop art he had encountered in the US, Maurer designed "Bulb" in 1966, a table lamp in the form of a giant light bulb of chromium plated metal and handblown glass. Numerous other innovative lighting designs followed, which made Ingo Maurer famous worldwide.
Ingo Maurer created the "No fuss" lamp (1969) and the elegantly simple "Savoie" (1979).
In 1980 he designed the pendent or floor lamp "Bulb Bulb", which is also in the form of a giant light bulb but is made of pressure molded plastic. Colored light bulbs change its appearance. "Bulb Bulb is fun. Pop and kitsch," as Ingo Maurer says.
From 1982 to 1984 Ingo Maurer developed the often copied low-voltage system "Ya Ya Ho", which consists of low-voltage wires with little halogen lamps attached and stretched across a room.
In 1992 Maurer created "Lucellino", a light bulb with little goose-feather wings. In 1994 he came up with "Porca Miseria!", a pendent lamp made of broken crockery fastened to wires surrounding the source of light. His "Zettel'z" lamp (1998) have been particularly successful.
In 1999 Maurer created several aluminium lampshades with a diameter of four meters for the new Munich Westfriedhof underground station.
In 1973 "Design M" was renamed as "Ingo Maurer Lighting GmbH".
Ingo Maurer received many prices and awards for his creations as for instance the Design Prize 1999, awarded by the City of Munich.
His designs and objects were shown in numerous exhibitions, such as Ingo Maurer: Work with light in the Villa Stuck, Munich (1992). In 2002 the Vitra Design Museum organized the Ingo Maurer - Light - Reaching for the Moon, a travelling exhibition, which was shown in Europe and in Japan. In 2007 the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York presented the exhibition Provoking Magic: Lighting of Ingo Maurer.