Mid-Century Modern Furniture Then and Now - Paradigm Gallery Blog

#6 – Poul Kjaerholm: The Final Figure of Danish Furniture Design

Posted by Lynne van den Berg On September 28th

Poul Kjaerholm sketch of chairs, courtesy of Flicker user plindberg

 

Poul Kjaerholm, born in Denmark in 1929, was a trained carpenter and cabinet maker. He studied at the Danish School of Arts & Crafts, with a particular interest in various construction materials. He seemed to have an affinity for the use of steel, which he considered to be a “natural material”.

Kjaerholm was one of the final…

…figures to emerge from the Danish furniture industry in the 20th Century, but could be considered to be one of the most profound. His inspiration for modern furniture design was a vision that combined industrial production with the delicacy and precision of craft techniques.

During his employment at Fritz Hansen, Poul Kjaerholm designed several chair prototypes. He then began to collaborate with manufacturer, Ejvind Kold Christensen in 1955, and worked together with him until Kjaerholm’s death in 1980.

Poul’s designs, called “The Kjaerholm Collection”, are very logical down to the smallest detail. They typically revolve around open modular structures, with the historical reference and ornament stripped away, revealing the beauty of the natural materials and quality construction.

Poul Kjaerholm was honored with numerous awards for his modern furniture design, including:

  • Two Grand Prix at the Milan Triennale
  • The Lunning Prize
  • Numerous ID Awards

His work is featured in the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and is a permanent collection in numerous other museums around the world.

 

– Lynne

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