George Nakashima Coffee and Cocktail Tables

George Nakashima (USA, 1905-1990)

A master woodworker and M.I.T.-trained architect, George Nakashima was the leading light of the American Studio furniture movement. Along with Wharton Esherick, Sam Maloof, and Wendell Castle, Nakashima was an artisan who disdained industrial methods and materials in favor of a personal, craft-based approach to the design. What sets Nakashima apart is the poetic style of his work, his reverence for wood and the belief that his furniture could evince — as he put it in the title of his 1981 memoir — “The Soul of a Tree.”

     Born in Spokane, Washington, to Japanese immigrants, Nakashima traveled widely after college, working and studying in Paris, Japan and India, and at every stop he absorbed both modernist and traditional design influences. The turning point in Nakashima’s career development came in the United States in 1942, when he was placed in an internment camp for Asian-Americans in Idaho. There, Nakashima met a master woodcarver who tutored him in Japanese crafting techniques. A former employer won Nakashima’s release and brought him to bucolic New Hope, Pennsylvania, where Nakashima set up a studio and worked for the rest of his life.

     Nakashima’s singular aesthetic is best captured in his custom-made tables and benches — pieces that show off the grain, burls and whorls in a plank of wood. He left the “free edge,” or natural contour, of the slab un-planed, and reinforced fissures in the wood with “butterfly” joints. Almost all Nakashima seating pieces have smooth, milled edges. Nakashima also contracted with large-scale manufacturers to produce carefully supervised editions of his designs. Knoll has offered his “Straight Chair” — a modern take on the spindle-backed Windsor chair — since 1946; the now-defunct firm Widdicomb-Mueller issued the Shaker-inspired “Origins” collection in the 1950s.

     Nelson Rockefeller in 1973 gave Nakashima his single largest commission: a 200-piece suite for his suburban New York estate. Today, Nakashima furniture is collected by both the staid and the fashionable: his work sits in the collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Smithsonian Institution, as well as in the homes of Stephen Spielberg, Brad Pitt, Diane von Furstenberg and the late Steve Jobs.

George Nakashima Coffee or Side Table for Widdicomb, circa 1950s
George Nakashima Coffee or Side Table for Widdi...
George Nakashima, Widdicomb Furniture Co.
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Wood
George Nakashima origins coffee or side table for Widdicomb Made in Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA in the late 1950s Measure: 30 W x 30 D x 21 H in Original label and marking t...
George and Mira Nakashima English Oak, Walnut and Hickory Minguren Coffee Table
George and Mira Nakashima English Oak, Walnut a...
George Nakashima
Vintage 1980s American Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Hickory, Oak, Walnut
A wonderful collaboration from father and daughter George and Mira Nakashima. This table was custom-made and acquired from it's original owner.
George Nakashima Coffee Table
George Nakashima Coffee Table
George Nakashima
Vintage 1960s American Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Wood
George Nakashima, 1965. American black walnut, double free edge solid top with highly figured grain. Signed with original clients name with authenticity document from Nakashima...
George Nakashima "Shell-Shaped" Coffee Table in American Black Walnut, 1940s
George Nakashima "Shell-Shaped" Coffee Table in...
George Nakashima
Vintage 1940s American Organic Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Walnut
"Shell-Shaped" coffee table in American Black Walnut designed and handmade by the venerable George Nakashima, circa 1943. This piece has been authenticated by the Nakashima Foundatio...
Authenticated George Nakashima Wepman Live Edge Rustic Cabin Modern Table Stool
Authenticated George Nakashima Wepman Live Edge...
George Nakashima
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Side Tables
Walnut
George Nakashima studio piece, accompanied by authentication paperwork from the Nakashima Foundation.
George Nakashima, Coffee Table/Bench
George Nakashima, Coffee Table/Bench
George Nakashima
Vintage 1970s American Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Walnut
George Nakashima, coffee table/bench in American black walnut. Signed: George Nakashima, 1977.
George Nakashima Coffee Table
George Nakashima Coffee Table
George Nakashima
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Walnut
Slab coffee table by George Nakashima. American black walnut triangular top, all sides with free edge.
George Nakashima, Round Coffee Table, circa 1960
George Nakashima, Round Coffee Table, circa 1960
George Nakashima, Nakashima Studio
20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Walnut
A beautiful walnut coffee table designed by George Nakashima, circa 1960s. Split visible from top is not damage and is contained with a hidden butterfly on the underside (see Image).
George Nakashima, Free-Form Slab Coffee Table, circa 1960
George Nakashima, Free-Form Slab Coffee Table, ...
George Nakashima, Nakashima Studio
Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Walnut
A beautiful and soulful, free-from slab coffee table in walnut by George Nakashima, New Hope, PA, circa 1960. Marked underneath with clients name.
George Nakashima Coffee Table in Indian Laurel...
George Nakashima
Vintage 1960s American Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Very rare coffee table by George Nakashima - 1969, built of four solid boards of Indian Laurel. Signature "Butterflies" on top. Original design drawing by Mr. Nakashima, describing ...
George Nakashima Bench or Coffee Table in Walnut
George Nakashima
Vintage 1960s Coffee and Cocktail Tables
A large bench or coffee table in figurative walnut by George Nakashima, 1963. Sold with a copy of the original paperwork.
George Nakashima Coffee Table for Widdicomb
George Nakashima
Mid-20th Century Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Designer: George Nakashima Manufacture: Widdicomb Period/style: Mid-Century Modern Country: USA Date: 1950s.
George Nakashima Walnut Amoeba Table
George Nakashima
Mid-20th Century American Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Wonderful walnut Amoeba table by renowned New Hope furniture maker George Nakashima. Figured free form top with turned legs.
George Nakashima Coffee Table for Widdicomb
George Nakashima
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Rosewood
George Nakashima coffee table for Widdicomb. This is the larger version of this table. Table consists of both carpathian elm and rosewood. Signed and dated.
George Nakashima Coffee Table for Widdicomb
George Nakashima
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Rosewood
George Nakashima coffee table for Widdicomb. This is the larger version of this table. Table consists of both carpathian elm and rosewood. The rich grains and color contrast between ...
George Nakashima Coffee Table Model 272 Laurel ...
George Nakashima, Widdicomb Furniture Co.
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
George Nakashima flip-top coffee table model 272 manufactured by Widdicomb in 1961. The underside of the drawer is stenciled Sundra 2/ 61 272. The coffee table is in excellent condit...
George Nakashima Minguren Cocktail Table
George Nakashima
20th Century Coffee and Cocktail Tables
George Nakashima Minguren cocktail table. A stunning example. Full provenance.
Walnut Butterfly Base Coffee Table by George Na...
George Nakashima
Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Walnut
Free edge walnut top with very complex graining supported by canted walnut legs and butterfly base.
Large Coffee Table by George Nakashima
George Nakashima
Vintage 1950s Coffee and Cocktail Tables
A large coffee table made of solid rosewood and carpathian elm. Designed by George Nakashima for Widdicomb.
George Nakashia designe for Widdicomb Coffee Ta...
George Nakashima, Widdicomb Furniture Co.
Vintage 1950s American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Walnut
George Nakashima walnut coffee table manufactured by Widdicomb. Excellent original condition.
Walnut Coffee Table by George Nakashima
George Nakashima
20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Walnut
A thick Walnut slab having a beautiful and complex grain pattern supported by four angled Walnut legs make this small scale table a great example of the form.
A Minguren II Coffee Table by George Nakashima
George Nakashima
20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
A Beautiful and rare form done in a very rare Persian Walnut. Having one of the most defined and interesting tops that I've seen to date. Top supported by upright slab and floor supp...
Walnut Coffee Table by George Nakashima
George Nakashima
20th Century American Coffee and Cocktail Tables
A large and highly figured and thick free edge Walnut slab top having several different types of grain patterns. Burling to edges of top as well. Walnut slab and leg configuration su...
A Black Walnut Coffee Table by George Nakashima
George Nakashima
20th Century American Coffee and Cocktail Tables
This is a beautiful Slab of Black Walnut having a swirling marble grain pattern.Great free edge on all sides with a very interesting corner edge of the top. Large slab upright and tw...
Walnut Bench by George Nakashima
George Nakashima
20th Century American Benches
A very rare and wonderful tongue and groove bench having a thru tenon board running the length of the bench with exposed tenon. There has only been one other example of this form to ...
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