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George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

American, 1908-1986
American, 1908-1986

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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Creator: George Nelson
George Nelson Swag Leg Desk and Eames Herman Miller Chair, Circa 1960
By Herman Miller, Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson
Located in Media, PA
An incredible pairing of a vintage 1960s “Swag Leg Desk” by George Nelson for Herman Miller and a Charles Eames wireframe swivel chair. The Swag leg desk is a Herman Miller classi...
Category

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

Materials

Stainless Steel, Wire

Early George Nelson for H. Miller Desk '4658', Rare Black Lacquer /Green Leather
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Buffalo, NY
George Nelson for Herman Miller, desk model '4658', walnut, steel, leather, United States, 1946 Rare Color Configuration... Early example,, Unmolested,, all original condition... ...
Category

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

Materials

Steel

George Nelson Walnut Action Office Tambour Desk Large, Herman Miller, 1964
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Utrecht, NL
Solid walnut first edition 1964 'Action Office' desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller. This is the largest size desk that was available from the program. The desk is executed...
Category

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

Materials

Chrome

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 model '4658', walnut, steel, leather, United States, 1946 Made of walnut with original brown leather writing surface and sliding doors, resting...
Category

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

Materials

Steel

Seldom Seen George Nelson "HIGH' Action Office Architects Desk, Herman Miller
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
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

1950 Rare and Authentic Desk Designed by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By George Nelson
Located in Saint-Ouen, FR
Rare and authentic desk designed by George Nelson for Herman Miller EOG (Executive Office Group), circa 1952. Version of the "secretarial typing desk", model number 4751, here in a ...
Category

1950s American Vintage George Nelson Desks and Writing Tables

Materials

Metal

Desk by George Nelson & Robert Propst for Herman Miller
By Herman Miller, Robert Propst, George Nelson
Located in Madrid, ES
Action Office desk, model 64 902, designed by George Nelson & Robert Propst for Herman Miller from the 1960s. Base made of chrome-plated aluminum with white plastic protectors. Locka...
Category

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

Materials

Aluminum

George Nelson Desk for Herman Miller, 1960s
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Berlin, DE
George Nelson Desk for Herman Miller, 1960s The Top has a very floating appearance.
Category

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

Materials

Walnut

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 for Herman Miller Steelframe Desk
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Chicago, IL
George Nelson for Herman Miller steelframe desk, model 4111 black frame with Herman Miller orange drawer fronts and okra colored sides laminate plastic top.
Category

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

Materials

Steel

Yellow & Black Steel Frame Desk Model 4111 by George Nelson Herman Miller Mint
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Rockaway, NJ
Yellow & black steel frame desk Model 4111 by George Nelson Herman Miller Mint.
Category

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

Materials

Steel

George Nelson for Herman Miller 'Action Office 1' Desk
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
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

George Nelson Desk in Rosewood, 1960s
By Mobilier International, George Nelson
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

Early George Nelson Desk / Return, Child's Desk, Modernist, Herman Miller
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Buffalo, NY
Early George Nelson desk / return, child's desk, Modernist, Herman Miller, Retains original Herman Miller foil label, 4 drawers, pencil dividers, steel frame, minor pitting (lower ri...
Category

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

Materials

Aluminum, Steel

George Nelson for Herman Miller Mid Century Walnut Desk
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Countryside, IL
George Nelson for Herman Miller mid century walnut desk This desk measures: 71 wide x 29.5 deep x 29.5 inches high, with a chair clearance of 24 inches ?All pieces of furniture...
Category

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

Materials

Metal

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

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

Writing Desk by George Nelson
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
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

George Nelson Home Office Desk Model 4658 for Herman Miller
By George Nelson, Herman Miller
Located in Dallas, TX
George Nelson & Associates Home Office desk, model 4658 Manufactured by Herman Miller USA, 1946 This example is constructed of combed oak, chrome-plated steel, aluminum, and leat...
Category

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

Materials

Aluminum, Steel

George Nelson by Herman Miller Laminated Aluminum Design 1950s Rare Desk
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
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

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

George Nelson Home Desk for Herman Miller
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
Located in Hudson, NY
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

1960s Action Office Standing Desk by George Nelson, Herman Miler production
By George Nelson, Herman Miller, Robert Propst
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

George Nelson for Herman Miller Desk ca' 1940's
By George Nelson
Located in St.Petersburg, FL
George Nelson for Herman Miller desk model # 4658, in walnut, steel and leather, ca' late 1940's. A Classic Postwar modernist desk made of walnut with steel legs and its original bro...
Category

1940s 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

1960s Walnut and Leather Desk by George Nelson for Herman Miller
By Herman Miller, George Nelson
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 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

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

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George Nelson desks and writing tables for sale on 1stDibs

1stDibs George Nelson desks and writing tables are available for sale. These distinctive objects are often made of wood and designed with extraordinary care. There are many options to choose from in our collection of George Nelson desks and writing tables, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. We stock 34 vintage versions of these items, while there is 0 modern edition to choose from as well. Many of George Nelson's original desks and writing tables were created in the mid-century modern style in the United States during the 20th century. Many customers also consider desks and writing tables by Herman Miller, Paul McCobb and Edward Wormley if you are looking for additional options. The prices for George Nelson desks and writing tables can vary depending on size, time period and other attributes. The price for these items starts at $1,403 and tops out at $16,400, while pieces like these can sell for $6,000 on average.

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