Kaare Klint’s significance to Danish furniture design cannot be overstated. Klint was one of the designers to pave the way for functionalism and he played a key role in the rise of Danish Modern.
Klint never sought to invent new categories of furniture, only to evolve and improve on existing models. He did this by working meticulously with the furniture’s idiom, proportions, surface treatment and craftsmanship. He was renowned for using variations on a common theme in his work and refining his designs to meet changing lifestyles. This approach is evident in the two coffee tables now being relaunched by Carl Hansen & Son. The tables were designed to meet the needs of the day – the square coffee table was originally intended for displaying a radio, while the circular model was designed for entertaining, with ample space for bottles and glasses.
Thought-out design and craftsmanship
The circular KK66870 Coffee Table from 1930 has a refined appearance and is one of Kaare Klint’s more detailed designs. The band that wraps around the tabletop, giving the table a soft and tactile look, is carefully created by Carl Hansen & Son’s skilled craftsmen. The table’s angled legs have vertical grooves which stop at the shelf and continue under the tabletop; an elegant and decorative detail that celebrates good craftsmanship and adds character to the piece.
The square KK44860 Side Table has a more discreet and minimalist aesthetic, testifying to Klint’s pragmatic approach to design, where function is paramount and the wood serves as decoration in itself. The table was designed in 1932 and presented at the Copenhagen Cabinetmakers’ Guild Furniture Exhibition in 1933, together with Klint’s world-famous Safari Chair and iconic Addition Sofa. Both these pieces have kinship with the table, evident in their geometric aesthetic.
The masters’ teacher
Kaare Klint’s visionary ideas and appreciation of materials influenced generations of Danish furniture designers. Over a number of decades, he created many iconic pieces of furniture that became the epitome of Danish Modern, including the Faaborg Chair in 1914 – considered today to be the first modern Danish furniture classic. As one of the founders of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts School of Furniture, Kaare Klint also helped to pass on his insight to many of the great Danish design masters – including Hans J. Wegner, Børge Mogensen, Arne Jakobsen and Ole Wanscher.