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Mid-century is an era of design that is taking the design world by storm but has it ever really gone out of date? Taking inspiration from manufacturer Knoll’s mission statement – Modern always, because Modern always works. Mid Century furniture typically dates to the 1950’s and 1960’s, designers during this time blurred the lines between art and function. Identified as minimalist ‘modern’ furniture many pieces from this movement are timeless classic pieces that are instantly recognisable.
Each piece can be suited to any office design - industrial/relaxed/ luxurious or executive office. These pieces are designed not to compete with architecture but to compliment their surroundings.
Harry Bertoia designed his collection for Knoll in the early 1950’s. The Bertoia collection is iconic, and instantly recognisable - the Bertoia collection consists of side chairs, bar stools, Bertoia bench and the Diamond chair. The Bertoia Side Chair is most commonly seen in Kitchen settings similar to the Checkout.com offices pictured. Harry Bertoia spoke about these pieces as “mainly made of air, like sculpture, Space passes right through them” - a truly versatile chair to suit multiple environments.
Image via Office Snapshots Checkout.com offices in London
Like ‘basket full of pillows’ – this was the request from Florence Knoll to Eero Saarinen. The result was a ground-breaking design that broke the mould and set new standards for modern furniture design. The Womb chair is not only suitable for residential environments, over the years these have been growing in popularity as breakout spaces in offices as pictured below in Minneapolis.
Possibly one of the most recognisable pieces of furniture from the Mid –Century era is the Barcelona Chair. Mies van der Rohes’ less is more approach to design is truly reflected in this design. Classic and effortlessly elegant. Most associated in lobby and reception areas of high-end offices in recent times we are seeing these more in informal settings and both equally look superb.
Image via Office Snapshots Avon NYC Offices
Designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1958 the Egg is a forever classic. Arne Jacobsen designed this chair specifically for the SAS Royal Hotel in Copenhagen. Fritz Hansen have been manufacturing this chair by hand since 1958 and the process has remained the same to this day. The Egg is so versatile commonly seen in many homes and offices the Egg can be used in a formal or informal setting.
Fritz Hansen Egg Chair pictured in Soft Bank NYC Offices. Image via Officelovin.com.
Another of Arne Jacobsen designs for the SAS Royal Hotel. There are no straight lines only curves another departure for the furniture during this era. The Swan chairs are still extremely popular to this day. We recently installed these in the DLR Library, in Dun Laoghaire.
DLR, Lexicon, Public Library, Dun Laoghaire.
Last but not least is the most sold chair in the history of Fritz Hansen, the Series 7. Handmade to this day and most people have no doubt come across this chair on their travels. The Series 7 is a piece that works well as a dining chair as pictured below but also as a stand alone piece in a room setting.
DR (Danish Broadcasting Corporation). Image via Fritz Hansen
First established in 1938 Knoll wanted to design modern furniture that would compliment its surrounding architecture. Knoll Studio have teamed up with the world's leading architects and designers for the last 75 years to create modern, timeless and classic pieces of furniture from both classic and contemporary designers.
Founded in 1872, Republic of Fritz Hansen has a long history of collaborating with international designers to create ground breaking designs. A collection of both classic and contemporary furniture, home accessories and lighting. Fritz Hansen's work is guided by the philosophy that a single piece of furniture can beautify an entire room or building.
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