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Werkstätte Carl Auböck

Austrian

In Vienna’s Neubau district, a beautiful Biedermeier townhouse has been home to the Werkstätte Carl Auböck for more than 100 years. Inside the workshop, where production continues to this day, countless objects line the shelves, walls, tabletops and desktops.

The Viennese artist and designer Carl Auböck II was one of the quirkiest and most delightful and collectible of modern designers. A rather odd duck in the world of decorative arts, he was a peculiar talent whose specialties included smaller desk accessories and tabletop pieces such as corkscrews, paperweights, letter openers, bookends and bottle stoppers. He rendered these pieces in a combination of metal — most often brass — and such elemental materials as leather, knobby wood and animal horn, creating forms that could be almost Surrealist, from hands and feet to keys, birds and amoebae.

As a boy, Auböck was precocious and artistic. He studied drawing and at the same time trained in the workshop of his father, Karl Heinrich Auböck, a popular maker of traditional bronze figurines and collectibles. In 1919, Carl II went to Germany to study at the Bauhaus, where he was a pupil of the progressive artist and theorist Johannes Itten. While the Bauhaus is most associated with the rigidly ordered, functionalist architecture of its directors Walter Gropius and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, the school was in reality a liberal, spirited place — a crucible for imaginative, playful and avant-garde art and design. It was this spirit that imbued Carl II’s work from the time he left in 1921.

In 1922 or ’23, Carl Auböck II returned to Vienna to help care for his ailing father, and he took over the business. He created the Werkstätte Carl Auböck and a legacy that earned his objects cult status among collectors. The business was passed on to his descendants, who run the atelier that is still in operation today. Today, objects designed by Carl II make up 90 percent of Werkstätte Carl Auböck’s production, joined by the creations of architect and designer Carl IV, his grandson.

Vintage Auböck designs have a special character, a patina that only emphasizes how much the pieces have been loved and used. Carl Aubock II’s small furniture items — leather- or caned-sling magazine racks; free-edge wooden side tables with tubular bronze legs; wicker serving trolleys with turned beechwood wheels — are elegant and purposeful. His bijoux desktop objects, library tools, ashtrays and barware pieces evince a kind of mirthful practicality. They seem to ask: “If you need a corkscrew, or a paperweight, or a candlestick, why not make it fun as well as functional?” And indeed, why not?

Find a collection of vintage Werkstätte Carl Auböck mirrors, seating, tables, decorative objects and other furniture on 1stDibs.

Vintage Pair of Carl Auböck Bronze and Leather Bookends
By Werkstätte Carl Auböck
Located in Brooklyn, NY
Nice vintage pair of solid bronze biomorphic bookends with hand-stitched leather sleeves. Stamped "Aubock Bronze" to each example.
Category

1950s Austrian Vintage Werkstätte Carl Auböck

Materials

Bronze

Carl Aubock II Organic Drop Horn Bowl, Vide-Poche, Vienna, Austria, 1950s
By Werkstätte Carl Auböck
Located in Vienna, AT
A beautiful and minimalistic mid-century modern bowl from the 1950s, shaped like a drop, made of cow horn. Designed and manufactured by Werkstätte Carl Auböck, Vienna, Austria. A ver...
Category

Mid-20th Century Mid-Century Modern Werkstätte Carl Auböck

Materials

Horn

3 Sets '6 Pieces' of Aubocks Favorite Cobe Holder, Mid-Century
By Werkstätte Carl Auböck
Located in Vienna, AT
3 sets (6 pieces) Corncob holder from Carl Aubock II. The corncob holders are also shown in the Auböck catalog (see photo). The holders have a beautiful streamline shape and it see...
Category

Mid-20th Century Austrian Mid-Century Modern Werkstätte Carl Auböck

Materials

Brass, Nickel

Large Carl Auböck Mid-Century Coat Rack Beech Wardrobe with 8 Brass Hooks, 1950s
By Werkstätte Carl Auböck
Located in Vienna, AT
An elegant modernist wall-mounted coat rack from the 1950s. An original and old vintage object, designed and manufactured by the Austrian architect and designer Carl Auböck. The fram...
Category

Mid-20th Century Austrian Mid-Century Modern Werkstätte Carl Auböck

Materials

Brass

Rare Carl Auböck Coat Rack With Hat Rack, Wardrobe, Brass, Walnut & Beech, 1950s
By Werkstätte Carl Auböck
Located in Vienna, AT
An elegant modernist wall-mounted coat rack from the 1950s. An original and old vintage object, designed and executed by the Austrian architect and designer Carl Auböck. This is a un...
Category

Mid-20th Century Austrian Mid-Century Modern Werkstätte Carl Auböck

Materials

Brass

Carl Auböck Mid-Century Coat Rack Beech Wardrobe with 7 Brass Hooks, 1950s
By Werkstätte Carl Auböck
Located in Vienna, AT
An elegant modernist wall-mounted coat rack from the 1950s. An original and old vintage object, designed and executed by the Austrian architect and designer Carl Auböck. The frame is...
Category

Mid-20th Century Austrian Mid-Century Modern Werkstätte Carl Auböck

Materials

Brass

Original Carl Aubock Large Mid-Century Walnut Tree Trunk Coffee Table, 1950s
By Werkstätte Carl Auböck
Located in Vienna, AT
A organic and sculptural original vintage tree trunk sofa table from the 1950s, designed and executed by Carl Auböck. This impressive and unusual modernist table is made of a walnut wood slab with a polished tabletop, which shows lovely grain. Its has a black-finished bottom and stands on three naturally patinated brass legs and black rubber shoes. In original unrestored but very good condition. Please notice, that one of the brass leg shows...
Category

Mid-20th Century Austrian Mid-Century Modern Werkstätte Carl Auböck

Materials

Brass

Carl Auböck #4995 Patinated Brass Hook
By Werkstätte Carl Auböck
Located in Glendale, CA
Carl Auböck #4995 patinated brass hook. Designed in the 1950s, this versatile and Minimalist Viennese hook is executed in polished and patinated brass by We...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Austrian Mid-Century Modern Werkstätte Carl Auböck

Materials

Brass

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Werkstätte Carl Auböck furniture for sale on 1stDibs.

Werkstätte Carl Auböck furniture are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive items are frequently made of metal and are designed with extraordinary care. There are many options to choose from in our collection of Werkstätte Carl Auböck furniture, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. We have 599 vintage editions of these items in-stock, while there is 369 modern edition to choose from as well. Many of the original furniture by Werkstätte Carl Auböck were created in the mid-century modern style in europe during the 20th century. If you’re looking for additional options, many customers also consider furniture by Walter Bosse, Karl Hagenauer, and Franz Hagenauer. Prices for Werkstätte Carl Auböck furniture can differ depending upon size, time period and other attributes — on 1stDibs, these items begin at $145 and can go as high as $27,073, while a piece like these, on average, fetch $823.

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