Coffee table designed by Finn Juhl for Niels Vodder,
Walnut-veneered wood, ash, walnut, painted steel, and aluminium.
Only two of these coffee tables with an integrated planter are known to have been made.
Provenance: From a private Danish collection.
This coffee table is a rare example of Finn Juhl’s early work. The pioneering Danish architect and designer conceived the piece in 1941 – it is characterised by an integrated planter, the surface’s organic shape, and a compelling combination of materials, namely ash, walnut, walnut-veneer, aluminium, and painted steel. Only two of these coffee tables are known to have been made. One of them was part of Juhl’s home, as shown by an early photograph of the piece in his house and a 1941 floor plan by the designer himself. Notably, this table predates Juhl’s international acclaim.
Juhl initially wanted to be an art historian, but his father doubted the financial prospects of the profession. The compromise was that Juhl would become an architect, instead. Throughout his life, Juhl was continuously inspired by contemporary art, particularly by the artists Henry Moore, Jean Arp, Barbara Hepworth, Erik Thommesen, and Vilhelm Lundstrøm. From an early age, he developed a thorough knowledge of the modern styles of international architecture — the Bauhaus in Germany, De Stijl in Holland, and Russian constructivism.
Most of the Danish architects and cabinetmakers at the time were strongly influenced by Kaare Klint and his school. They looked to the past, studying British 18th-century furniture and Chinese furniture, and took a very functionalist and rational approach to design. In this context, Juhl clearly stood out and was more interested in an artistic approach.
Juhl was the most sculptural of the Danish masters. Juhl worked with different, often larger, manufacturers but his finest collaborations were with his friend Niels Vodder, one of the most skilled cabinetmakers in Denmark at the time.
H: 40 cm / 15 3/4''
L: 124 cm / 4' 3/4''
W: 60 cm / 23 1/2''
Price: on application