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DESIGN

Danish Design

IN COPENHAGEN WITH GEORG JENSEN

ON DANISH  DESIGN:
Discovering Danish Heritage with Georg Jensen

ANZEIGE

Danish design is well-known around the world. For the desire to design products which work and last. For perfection in form and style. For functionality – without looking too functional. For simplicity and attention to craftsmanship. All this makes Danish design so unique and special. Thinking of iconic pieces by HANS WEGNER and KAARE KLINT, my love for furniture and objects made in Denmark really took off when I bought some of my favorite pieces a few years ago: A pair of Ole Wanscher Senator chairs. Ever since then, I’m kind of a collector.

In line with my love of and interest in Danish design, I received an invitation from GEORG JENSEN and GARDE HVALSØE to travel to Copenhagen for a few days to discover Danish design and its heritage. On my agenda: The GEORG JENSEN headquarters – with their archive and smithy; two private home visits – filled with iconic design pieces; and a trip to the GARDE HVALSØE showroom and woodworking manufacture hidden in the forest of Gribskov.

Georg Jensen:
A historical context

Jensen was already apprenticed as a goldsmith at age 14 but then worked as a sculptor and ceramist before returning to metalwork – with his main focus on designing jewelry and small silver objects, all produced in the workshop he opened in Copenhagen in 1904. That same year, he opened his first shop and displayed his pieces at the Museum of Decorative Arts in Copenhagen. Success came immediately. And stays until today. 

Nature was a constant subject in the work of Georg Jensen, which was strongly influenced by the Art Nouveau movement of the time when he started this business and got established. Gemstones, which are typically for that era, like opals, green agate and amber were used in his designs. He also embraced Art Nouveau motifs in this work: Flowing forms, sculptured ornamentation, bouquets of flowers and grapes are style-defining for his designs. All this ideas were translated over the years into the design of the present day.
Since the beginning, Georg Jensen worked together with different artists and designers – they always had and have free reign in their work and were fully credited with their designs. In the history of Georg Jensen, the company has employed over ninety designers, including Henning Koppel, Arne Jacobsen and Vivianna Torun Bülow-Hübe.

“Silver is the best material we have. And silver has this wonderful shine like moonlight. A light taken straight from a Danish summer’s night.” 
  

 – Georg Jensen

Visiting private homes is a rare chance to peek into the personal interior style of someone else. This always feels very special and intimate to me. Which pieces does the person own? What do they collect? Which books are displayed? The house of Thomas Schlosser Svendsen is a gem – filled with iconic Danish design pieces and a huge GEORG JENSEN collection. No surprise: He’s the owner of KLASSIK COPENHAGEN, Scandinavia’s largest dealer of original mid-century furniture, objects, ceramics, lamps and art. His house spans four floors with white walls and dark wooden floors featuring objects by POUL KJAERHOLM, LOUIS POULSEN and HANS WEGNER.

Susanne Rutzou, a Danish interior designer, moved into her villa in Copenhagen in 2014 – designed and built by celebrated architect Vilhelm Lauritzen in 1932, a place which also served as his home back then. It’s a classic Danish Modernism house with a two-storey construction, large windows and the typical functional design. The look and feel of the villa is a bit rustic and industrial but also comes with some modern and chic touches. 

Rutzou only changed small details and renewed selected areas, for instance, applying new wall paint or a new polish on the floors. She wanted to conserve the vibe of the house and its unique history. Fittingly, the kitchen in Rutzou’s house was done by GARDE HVALSØE and was also previously the home to Soren Havalsoe Garde, the owner of the brand. 

Shot on location in Copenhagen

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