Hans J. Wegner
Hans J. Wegner and the Danish Modern era
Just as Arne Jacobsen and Verner Panton Hans J. Wegner is one of the most famous furniture designers of the 20th century. The designer was instrumental in the Danish Modern era, which marked a completely new furniture culture in the 50s and 60s.
From carpenter to legendary furniture designer
In 1914 Hans J. Wegner was born as the son of a shoemaker in Danish Tønder. After his apprenticeship as a carpenter at the H. F. Stahlberg Wegner moved to Copenhagen, where he studied at the today "Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, School of Design".
After an additional postgraduate degree in Architecture Hans J. Wegner initiated a joint project with Arne Jacobsen and Erik Møller in 1940, the trio took over the interior design of the town hall. That same year, the foundation for the cooperation with the master carpenter Johannes Hansen was laid, who was known for his modern design throughout Denmark.
Hans J. Wegner's big breakthrough came in 1942, when the Industrial Art Museum in Copenhagen bought his first chair. Afterwards the designer opened his own design studio in 1943 and began with the design of the "China-series" chairs, which inspiration comes from thrones of Chinese emperors. Within this series the Wishbone Chair was created, also known as the Y-Chair - Wegner's most famous design. Since 1950, the legendary furniture piece by Carl Hansen & Søn is continuously produced.
After his long period of creativity the designer died in Denmark in January 2007.
Hans J. Wegner's contribution to Danish Design
As a master of chair design Hans J. Wegner created the incredible number of more than 500 chairs over the course of his eventful life.
Influenced by his training Wegner always put the emphasis on perfectly crafted connections and exquisite design. The passion for wood is probably arising from the carpenter industry: Hans J. Wegner harboured deep respect for the material wood and was driven by a never-ending curiosity with regard to high-quality materials and their applications.
Minimalism runs like a red thread through his designs which he also enriched with organic and natural softness.
Throughout his life Hans J. Wegner has received numerous awards and honours. He was made a honourary member of the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts and received a Honourary Doctorate from the Royal College of Art in London. In addition to numerous other awards from renowned institutions the Museum of Modern Art showed respect to Wegner´s creations and took part ofhis collection into the permanent exhibition.
To this day, Hans J. Wegner's designs are of great importance and fascinate with their detailed elaboration and its unique design.