Credits: Photographs by Sang An, styling by Sam Cook
- "You need two very different sources of light to avoid eyestrain," says designer Christopher Coleman, who pairs the desk's task lighting with an overhead light.
- A task lamp fixes light where you need it most. Look for models with adjustable arms.
- Metal shades funnel light onto a specific area, such as the papers beside your computer.
- Philippe Starck's design for Flos has an internal diffuser for both direct and ambient light ($340, the Conran Shop).
- This classic shape, here in brass, is also available in antiqued bronze ($99.95, Crate & Barrel).
- Named Hebi—Japanese for "snake"—because of its coiled base, this light slips into any space ($130, Nova 68 Modern Design).
- Vico Magistretti's design for Artemide has a rotating shield that controls light ($140, Lumens Light + Living).
- An old-fashioned library lamp goes angular ($285, Ralph Lauren Home).
- This lamp might have come straight from an architect's drafting table ($210, Circa Lighting).
- Richard Sapper's fully maneuverable model towers above the rest ($510, Lucesco Lighting). Our task lamps are displayed on a Niedermaier worktable in front of Grid (2005), by Norbert Shimkus. Room locations courtesy of the Kips Bay Decorator Show House.