It was in the 20th Century when Danish furniture designers finally came of their own with a series of major furniture designs that have become what is considered a “modern classic” furniture style that bespeaks of the Danish motto of “form follows function.”
Early on, the design industry was heavily influenced by the great Bauhaus School of Design in Germany. Regardless of whether it was products such as furniture, kitchen goods, hardware and more, the improvements in product design made for quick advances with the changes in technology leading the way. Interior design and the outlying industries were no different. How one fashioned a home, from living room to patio was transformed by technology and the industrial age.
Denmark was no different, and in the early to mid 1900s brought many changes in how design was portrayed and viewed. Aesthetics were important, but aesthetics were drawn from the form of the shape required for furniture design, for example. A chair was designed more how a human body functioned and flowed, with elongated chaises and deep egg like chairs.
These Danish furniture designs by greats such as Arne Jacobsen, Hans J. Wegner and Poul Henningsen.
Arne Jacobsen is one of the more popular modern Danish furniture designers. He was passionate about good design and it didn’t matter what type of furniture it was – chair, desk, bed or table – Jacobsen had a grand passion for creating it. Jacobsen was known for his interior design as well as his architectural design. Key icons of his furniture design include the comfortable egg chair and the elegant swan chair, both of which represent the motto of form follows function and are neat, simple in design while being extremely functional.
Hans J. Wegner is known for an extensive design portfolio. It is said that Wegner has over 500 different modern chair designs and his passion for beauty, form AND function led him to be a prolific, in-demand furniture designer. Wegner worked with Jacobsen before opening his own agency in the 1940s.
Wegner was prolific in his modern chair designs and indeed, many of his designs have become staples in the modern furniture industry today. Browse through any modern furniture store today, whether it’s Los Angeles, New York or Miami, and you will see designs based on both Jacobsen and Wegner. Both of these Danish furniture designers were cutting-edge, bold and emulated the modern form follows function mentality.