Posted in materials
on March 26, 2014 1:09 pm EDT
The King of Chairs
Design-Museum Danmark marks the 100-year anniversary of Hans J. Wegner's birth with a large exhibition, opening on the 3rd of April 2014.
Hans J. Wegner (1914-2007) was one of history’s most prolific designers. In 1949 he created the design that the Americans called 'The Chair'. The perfect chair – but he continued designing new ones nonetheless, producing a total of over 500. He was referred to as 'The King of Chairs' – or just the 'Chair Maker'. His furniture paved the way for Danish Design’s international breakthrough in the years after World War II, and he was to become a leading figure in Organic Modernism.
A poetic take on modernism
Hans J.Wegner in AP46 Ox Chair 1960
Wegner’s work always took its starting point in craftsmanship, and he produced nearly all of his own prototypes in the workshop. His life is best understood as an enduring mission to understand the logic and the potential of wood. He showed the modern world that the old virtues of craftsmanship, such as sensuality, beautiful detailing and the use of natural materials, also have a place in the modern industrialized world. Wegner’s approach to design was neither retrospective nor romantic, but his furniture was nevertheless full of poetry – which is why his designs, despite the fact that they are wholly rational and grounded in functionality, have remained popular right up to the present day, even escaping criticism from the postmodernists. In our late postmodern times, Wegner in many ways represents a more human route into modernism.