(b. 1868, Hamburg, d. 1940, Berlin)

AEG electric water kettle

Private collection

In 1907 Behrens was called to Berlin as artistic adviser to AEG (Allgemeine Elektrizitäts-Gesellschaft). The greatest achievement of the Berlin years was the incomparable series of product, graphic and architectural designs for AEG, with which Behrens created the world's first corporate image. In the sphere of product design, this was achieved by offering a number of models based on various permutations of standardized parts, colours and finishes. This technique was applied to arc lamps, electric fans, electric clocks and, most successfully, to a range of electric kettles introduced in 1909.