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George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

George Nelson (USA, 1908–86)
George Nelson (USA, 1908–86)

Architect, designer, and writer George Nelson was a central figure in the mid-century American modernist design movement; and his thoughts influenced not only the furniture we live with, but also how we live.

Nelson came to design via journalism and literature. Upon receiving his bachelor’s degree in architecture from Yale in 1931, he won the Prix de Rome fellowship, and spent his time in Europe writing magazine articles that helped bring stateside recognition to Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Gio Ponti, Le Corbusier and other canonical modernist architects. In the 1940s, Nelson wrote texts that suggested such now-commonplace ideas as open-plan houses, storage walls and family rooms. D.J. De Pree, the owner of the furniture maker Herman Miller, was so impressed by Nelson that in 1944 — following the sudden death of Gilbert Rohde, who had introduced the firm to modern design in the 1930s — he invited Nelson to join the company as its design director.

There Nelson’s curatorial design talents came to the fore. To Herman Miller he brought such eminent creators as Charles and Ray Eames, Isamu Noguchi, and the textile and furniture designer Alexander Girard. Thanks to a clever contract, at the same time as he directed Herman Miller he formed a New York design company, George Nelson & Associates, that sold furniture designs to the Michigan firm, as well as its competitor, the Howard Miller Clock Company. Nelson’s New York team of designers (who were rarely individually credited) would create such iconic pieces as the Marshmallow sofa, the Coconut chair, the Ball clock, the Bubble lamp series and the many cabinets and beds that comprise the sleek Thin-Edge line.

For dedicated collectors, as well as for interior designers who look beyond “the look,” there is a “cool-factor” inherent to vintage pieces from George Nelson and others. Nelson was in on it from the start, and it’s valuable to have a piece that was there with him. But still, as is evident from the offerings from dealers on these pages, in any of the designs, in any iteration whose manufacture Nelson oversaw and encouraged, there are shining elements of lightness, elegance, sophistication — and a little bit of swagger. George Nelson felt confident in his ideas about design and didn’t mind letting the world know.

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George Nelson for Herman Miller Mid Century Executive Desk
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in La Grange, IL
George Nelson for Herman Miller mid century executive desk Desk measures: 56 wide x 52.75 deep x 29.25 inches high, with a chair clearance of 27.5 inches All pieces of furniture ...
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Laminate, Wood

George Nelson Desk w/ Return for Herman Miller from a Historic Landmark
By George Nelson
Located in Cincinnati, OH
A Nelson desk from a Eero Saarinen designed building which was designated a National Historic landmark by the National park Service in Columbus Indiana. The furnishings for the build...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Walnut

George Nelson Wood and Leather Office Desk for Herman Miller, USA 1948
By George Nelson
Located in New York, NY
From George Nelson's ground breaking 1948 group of designs for Herman Miller that put the company firmly in the ranks of post war modernism. Nelson's desk was decidedly futuristic, w...
Category

1940s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Steel

George Nelson Herman Miller Style Robert John MCM Walnut Laminate Cane Exec Desk
By Herman Miller, George Nelson, Robert John
Located in La Grange, IL
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Metal

George Nelson for H. Miller Desk Model 4658 in Walnut, Leather and Steel
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Waalwijk, NL
George Nelson for Herman Miller, desk n. 4658, walnut, steel, leather, United States, 1946 Made of walnut with original brown leather writing surface and sliding doors, resting on...
Category

1940s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Steel

1960s Action Office Standing Desk by George Nelson, Herman Miler production
By George Nelson, Robert Propst, Herman Miller
Located in Renens, CH
1960s Action Office Standing Desk by George Nelson, Herman Miler production George Nelson, architect, designer and author is famous for several of his creations such as the Bubble...
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Metal

Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller, 1960S
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Lasne, BE
Metal and wood desk, composed of a wooden flap that slides. Wear due to time and age of the desk. Missing crossbar that connects the 2 legs.  
Category

1960s Central American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Metal, Aluminum

Early Tambour Roll-Top Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller, 1960s
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Berlin, DE
Early tambour roll-top desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller, 1960s in its original condition.
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Chrome

1960s Walnut and Leather Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Glendale, CA
1960s walnut and leather desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller. Executed in walnut with leather lift top (with key) covering center filing compartment, which illuminates and contai...
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Aluminum

George Nelson for Herman Miller 'Action Office 1' Desk
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Early George Nelson Action Office 1 desk in original condition with minor wear. George Nelson for Herman Miller, polished aluminum, plastic laminate, wood, United States, design 1953.
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Metal

1950s George Nelson Swag Leg Desk
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Original Swag leg desk, designed by George Nelson for Herman Miller. Colorful cubbyholes and molded drawers allow for a tidy and streamlined workspace. Our early example is in very g...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Walnut

'Action Office 1' Roll Top Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Impeccable 'Action Office 1' roll top desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller. This roll top desk was designed as part of the Action Office 1 (AO1) furniture line by George Nelson...
Category

1970s American Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Aluminum, Steel, Steel

George Nelson Desk in Rosewood, 1960s
By George Nelson, Mobilier International
Located in Lyon, FR
Rare George Nelson writing desk in rosewood with leg in steel.  
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Wood

George Nelson for Herman Miller Midcentury Rectangular Wood Desk, USA, 1950
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Madrid, ES
Desk designed by George Nelson for Herman Miller, in 1950. With floating wood top supported by steel legs. Includes a bank of three storage drawers accented with brushed aluminum pulls.
Category

1950s American Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Metal

Seldom Seen George Nelson "HIGH' Action Office Architects Desk, Herman Miller
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Buffalo, NY
Stunning George Nelson "HIGH' action office architects desk, Herman Miller circa 1964, beautiful oak tambour roll top, four resin and wood slide out pencil drawers, built in file sto...
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Aluminum

1950s 'Steel Frame' Desk Model 4111 by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Sagaponack, NY
A compact white steel frame desk with three blue enameled drawers and black laminate top. Model 4111 from the 'Steel Frame' line for Herman Miller.
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Steel

George Nelson Home Desk for Herman Miller
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Dallas, TX
Walnut with original custom white leather writing surface and sliding floating doors, small drawers in maple. Storage and drop down typing table with original perforated aluminum fil...
Category

1940s American Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Steel

Writing Desk by George Nelson
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Sagaponack, NY
A single pedestal writing desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller with a built-in pivoting lamp. Lamp is 18" H.
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Steel

Home Office Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By George Nelson
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Home office desk model #4658 by George Nelson for Herman Miller. Floating back features leather covered doors with shelves inside. Fold-out compartment extends the work surface and r...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Walnut

George Nelson for Herman Miller Walnut Desk, N. 4658
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Phoenix, AZ
George Nelson for Herman Miller desk n. 4658, in walnut, steel and leather, 1946. A Classic Postwar modernism desk made of walnut with steel legs and its original brown leather wr...
Category

1940s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Steel

'Action Office 1' Roll Top Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Impeccable 'Action Office 1' roll top desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller. This roll top desk was designed as part of the Action Office 1 (AO1) furniture line by George Nelson...
Category

1970s American Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Aluminum, Steel, Steel

Mid-Century Modern Tambour Roll-Top Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Brooklyn, NY
This unique roll-top writing desk is from the Herman Miller "Action Office" line and features a beautiful hardwood hideaway design set on metal base with aluminum legs. Pair of drawe...
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

George Nelson "Dry Erase" Desk with Return
By George Nelson
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Fantastic desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller. Newly laminated Formica top with dry erase laminate. Very cool, dry/erase surface for your work desk. Extremely functional and uniq...
Category

1950s American Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Chrome

George Nelson by Herman Miller Laminated Aluminum Design 1950s Rare Desk
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Brescia, IT
George Nelson by Hermann Miller 1950s Laminated wood, aluminum base Rare model.
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Aluminum

George Nelson Herman Miller Drop Leaf Gate Leg Dining Table or Desk
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Chicago, IL
A rarer find in original black finish. Clever design by George Nelson for Herman Miller Measures: 40" depth 29.75" height. 64.75" long unfolded 41.5" half folded 18.5" folded.
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Wood

Elusive Modernist Action Office Desk or Table by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Buffalo, NY
Rarely seen modernist action office desk or conference table by George Nelson for Herman Miller. Purchased from prominent Buffalo NY architect. Beautiful figured walnut wood top mino...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Aluminum

Antique rolling desk by George nelson
By George Nelson
Located in Los Angeles, CA
An elegant rolling desk by GEORGE NELSON ALL SALES ARE FINAL, STORE CREDIT OR EXCHANGE ONLY
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Metal

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George Nelson Herman Miller Style Robert John MCM Walnut Laminate Cane Exec Desk
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Edward Wormley for Dunbar Mid Century Executive Desk
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
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Dunbar Mid Century Walnut Executive Desk
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George Nelson for Herman Miller Mid Century Storage Coffee Table
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Dunbar Contract Division Mid Century Executive Desk
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Located in La Grange, IL
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John Widdicomb Mid Century Burlwood Campaign Executive Desk
By John Widdicomb
Located in La Grange, IL
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Mainline by Hooker Mid Century 2 Sided Floating Walnut Executive Desk
By Mainline by Hooker
Located in La Grange, IL
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Materials

Walnut

George Nelson for Herman Miller Mid Century Chrome and Walnut End Tables, Pair
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in La Grange, IL
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Chrome, Walnut

George Nelson Style Thomasville Mid Century Walnut Chrome and Black Formica Desk
By Thomasville, George Nelson
Located in La Grange, IL
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Walnut, Chrome, Formica

Paul McCobb for Planner Group Mid Century Blonde 4 Drawer Desk
By Paul McCobb, Planner Group
Located in La Grange, IL
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Brass, Wood

Paul McCobb Planner Group for Winchendon Mid Century 2 Drawer Birch Desk
By Paul McCobb, Winchendon Furniture (Planner Group)
Located in La Grange, IL
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Chrome, Birch

Mid Century Walnut Roll Top Desk
Located in La Grange, IL
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Walnut

Previously Available Items
Clean Lined Desk or Dining Table by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Atlanta, GA
Clean lined architectural desk or dining table, designed by George Nelson for Herman Miller, circa 1950s. This piece is a versatile size and can be used as a desk or dining table.
Category

1950s American Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Wood

Mid-Century Modern Early Production George Nelson Herman Miller Swag Leg Desk
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Keego Harbor, MI
For your consideration is a rare early edition, swag leg desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller, with a single drawer, circa the 1950s. In very good vintage condition. The dimension...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Wood

George Nelson Desk for Herman Miller
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Los Angeles, CA
A vintage model 4111 desk from the Steel frame series of furniture by George Nelson & Associates for Herman Miller. This architectural minimalist desk has been restored including a n...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Steel, Chrome

  • George Nelson Desk for Herman Miller
  • George Nelson Desk for Herman Miller
  • George Nelson Desk for Herman Miller
  • George Nelson Desk for Herman Miller
H 29.5 in. W 42.13 in. D 18.5 in.
Action Office High Roll-Top Desk with Perch by George Nelson
By George Nelson, Herman Miller, Robert Propst
Located in Dronten, NL
Spectacular architect's desk from the Action Office Series designed by George Nelson & Robert Propst for Herman Miller. Featuring an ash tambour top that opens up to reveal a large...
Category

1970s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Aluminum, Chrome

Original Vintage George Nelson Swaged-Leg desk Herman Miller
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Chicago, IL
I beautiful example of this iconic desk form by George Nelson. In Vintage condition. These original examples are becoming scarcer to find on the open market. This one is in good c...
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20th Century American Mid-Century Modern George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Early George Nelson Walnut Dining Table
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in St. Louis, MO
From the Herman Miller Collection, walnut dining table by George Nelson has beautiful clean lines. Great for use as a desk as well. Retains original George Nelson design/Herman Mille...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Walnut

George Nelson Wood and Leather Office Desk for Herman Miller, USA, 1948
By George Nelson
Located in New York, NY
From George Nelson's ground breaking 1948 group of designs for Herman Miller that put the company firmly in the ranks of post war modernism. Nelson's desk was decidedly futuristic, w...
Category

1940s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Steel


George Nelson Action Oak Tambour Roll Top Desk for Herman Miller, circa 1964
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Longdon, Tewkesbury
George Nelson action oak Tambour roll top desk for Herman Miller, circa 1964 Rare George Nelson Action 1 Oak Tambour roll top desk by Herman Miller USA circa 1964, the desk with i...
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Oak

Executive Office Group Desk by George Nelson 1952 for Herman Miller
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Dallas, TX
Original production L-shaped executive desk with oak and maple and chrome steel legs and writing support. Original silver label in drawer. Work surface measure: 74 in. W x 36 in....
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1950s American Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

George Nelson Desk System
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Brooklyn, NY
1960s Modular George Nelson Formica walnut desk with typewriter desk for Herman Miller. This system is in excellent vintage condition—all the wood has been polished and refreshed, th...
Category

1960s Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

  • George Nelson Desk System
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  • George Nelson Desk System
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H 30 in. W 60 in. D 30 in.
George Nelson Black Lacquered Drop Leaf Desk, Mfg. Herman Miller
By George Nelson
Located in New York, NY
George Nelson black lacquered gate leg desk on stainless steel frame, mfg. Herman Miller. Original aluminum J pulls. Desk when open is 57 1/2″
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20th Century American George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Stainless Steel, Aluminum

Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By George Nelson
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller.
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

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  • Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller
  • Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller
H 30 in. W 60 in. D 30 in.