House of Finn Juhl Revives a Piece of Design History with the Launch of the Hulsø Shelf

House of Finn Juhl will make their first appearance at the Maison & Objet fair in Paris this January, introducing an elegant addition to their collection: The Hulsø Shelf, originally designed by Finn Juhl in 1949. The shelf’s organically shaped design challenges the conventional notion of a shelf as merely a backdrop for displayed objects. Instead, the Hulsø Shelf stands as an artistic element in its own right, adding aesthetic value to any room beyond its function.

Although Finn Juhl is primarily known for his sculptural furniture, his talents were not confined to this area alone. Trained as an architect, he excelled in creating magnificent, holistic exhibitions and interiors. A notable example is his iconic work for the Trusteeship Council Chamber at the UN headquarters in New York in 1952. Finn Juhl himself used the term “Gesamtkunstwerk” to describe a cohesive space where each element contributes to the overall experience.

It was this holistic approach that led Finn Juhl to design the shelf that House of Finn Juhl has named Hulsø. During a review of the drawing archive, a wave-shaped shelf with beautiful details was discovered, initially part of an interior design for the “winter garden” for Magister W. Andersen in Hulsø Ege, Rungsted, Denmark.

This specific interior, including the shelf, is illustrated in two of Finn Juhl’s original watercolors, and there is also a detailed technical drawing of the shelf dated 1949. The colourful interior also features Finn Juhl’s bold Wall Sofa and his most famous furniture piece, the Chieftain Chair, designed in the same year.

 

 

There is some mystery surrounding the original context of the shelf: The house in Hulsø Ege, Rungsted, dating back to 1917, still exists, but no further information about Finn Juhl’s 1949 interior project has been found. Nevertheless, Finn Juhl’s precise drawing has enabled House of Finn Juhl to recreate and now launch the Hulsø Shelf – 75 years after it was first designed.

The Hulsø Shelf will be available in oil-treated solid oak or walnut and can be mounted on the wall individually, in rows, or in free formations. When multiple shelves are combined, they create a cohesive organic expression with soft, curvy lines, adding both function and decoration to any space. Additionally, the shelf features a specially designed wall bracket that allows for adjustment after mounting.

Finn Juhl’s original drawing of the shelf for the interior at Magister W. Andersen’s home in Hulsø Ege, Rungsted. 

Finn Juhl’s original drawing of the interior at Magister W. Andersen’s home in Hulsø Ege, Rungsted. Photograph by Pernille Klemp, Design Museum Denmark.

 

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