Finn Juhl: a master of Danish design
Born in Copenhagen, Finn Juhl trained as an architect at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts and worked at Vilhelm Lauritzen‘s architectural practice before founding his own design practice in 1945.
Juhl took on a rich variety of interior, exhibition and product designs throughout his career, with clients ranging from Georg Jensen to SAS airlines.
Today, however, he is perhaps best known for the furniture he designed from the late 1930s onwards.
Featuring curvaceous organic forms and chair seats and backs which appear to float within a frame, Juhl’s charismatic designs were initially considered highly radical. The complexity of their form and construction also required exacting levels of craftsmanship; Juhl was notorious for testing the boundaries of what could be achieved with his favoured material of teak wood.
During the 1950s Juhl’s designs were exhibited in America where they were enthusiastically received. Juhl was subsequently commissioned to design a refrigerator for General Electric as well as glassware, ceramics and furniture for other US companies.
Perhaps his most prestigious commission, however, was to design the interior of the Trusteeship Council Chamber at the UN Headquarters building in New York (undertaken 1950-52).
Danish furniture company Onecollection now produces an extensive range of Finn Juhl’s classic furniture, combining modern technology with traditional craftsmanship to meet the exacting standards specified by the designer.
Onecollection’s association with the estate of Finn Juhl originated when Juhl’s widow contacted the company and asked for their help in reproducing his Model 57 sofa.
“One cannot create happiness with beautiful objects,” Juhl is famed for noting, “but one can spoil quite a lot of happiness with bad ones”.
Without wishing to contradict a master designer, we would argue that Finn Juhl’s furniture does instil joy in the hearts of those who appreciate enduring designs.
View the range of designs by Finn Juhl here.