Furniture Architect

This summer’s major exhibition at Louisiana will be a full-scale showing of the work of the Danish furniture artist Poul Kjærholm (1929-1980), one of the most important figures in 20th-century design.

The exhibition is the first retrospective presentation of Kjærholm’s work both as a furniture designer and as an exhibition architect, and should be viewed as a continuation of the series of Louisiana exhibitions of great Danish architects – Arne Jacobsen in 2001, Jørn Utzon in 2004.

The exhibition Poul Kjærholm at Louisiana will be a unique opportunity to experience the full scope of one of the most beautiful and seductive design oeuvres of the twentieth century. It is organized in tableaux which highlight Kjærholm’s most important and enduring designs and give us a panoramic overview of his output by exploring and elucidating the sources of inspiration and the tendencies in his artistic development and working process that Kjærholm was able to combine in his unique oeuvre.

The exhibition will show examples ranging from his early experiments in laminated wood and aluminium to his masterworks in steel and leather, up to his most recent works, where he returned to the woodwork of his younger days. All his furniture designs, rare prototypes and models from private collections, and a wide selection of photos, original sketches and drawings will be presented.

Kjærholm trained as a cabinetmaker and was a pupil of among others the Danish furniture
designer Hans J. Wegner and the architect Jørn Utzon. Later he was inspired by the new industrial materials that were used by the American designers Charles and Ray Eames and the German architect Mies van der Rohe. He constantly maintained a fruitful interplay between aesthetic reflections and industrial/technical possibilities,
which he combined with
geometrical abstraction and ergonomic form in timeless, exclusive and unique design.

Between forty and fifty years after their creation the works remain among the most coveted and admired furniture on the market. Many of them have achieved iconic status, and to this day several of them are made and sold by the Danish firm Fritz
Hansen, also to the
youngest generation the world over. In 2004 Kjærholm’s furniture was chosen to furnish the new extension of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York, which underscores its status as pioneering work in modern design.

The exhibition has been mounted as a collaboration between Louisiana and the American architect and expert on Nordic architecture Michael Sheridan, and realized with financial support from Margot & Thorvald Dreyers Fond, Statens Kunstfond and Fritz Hansen A/S.

DONG – Main sponsor of Louisiana's exhibitions
Realdania Foundation is the sponsor of Louisiana's architectural exhibitions
Nykredit is the sponsor of Lousiana Contemporary


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