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Chinese Chair
Iconic Designs

Chinese Chair

About the Design

When he designed the first edition of his modest Chinese chair — or China chair — Denmark native Hans Wegner (1914–2007) had been reportedly moved by portraits he’d seen of Danish businessmen relaxing in traditional round-backed Ming dynasty–era chairs. While the legendary furniture maker’s tribute to East Asian seating — a minimal cherrywood chair with a curved bentwood back support and removable leather seat cushion — called on Oriental forms that preceded him by hundreds of years, it merged the old with the new and was uniquely of its time.

In blending East Asian aesthetics and Scandinavian modernism, Wegner defined an approach that would underscore the sculptural and functional chairs he created in the years that followed. A dedication to craftsmanship, respect for natural materials and fussiness for details owe to his apprenticeship with master cabinetmaker H.F. Stahlberg. After his apprenticeship, Wegner studied at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts and collaborated with designers Arne Jacobsen and Erik Møller on furniture for Aarhus City Hall in 1938. Wegner established his own drafting studio in 1943 and designed the Chinese chair in 1944.

In its pared-down simplicity and reliance on soft organic shapes, the Chinese chair design yielded multiple prototypes, and so a collection of chairs inspired by Oriental craftsmanship followed — a line that includes Wegner’s celebrated Round chair as well as the Wishbone. It is currently produced by both Fritz Hansen and PP Møbler. Although Wegner designed nearly 500 chairs during his career, the Chinese chair is a cornerstone of his legacy — a legacy that continues to influence countless furniture makers today.

Hans Wegner China Chair

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Hans Wegner rosewood China Chair, FH4283, designed 1944, Fritz Hansen 1960s
By Fritz Hansen, Hans J. Wegner
Located in Wargrave, Berkshire
Designed by Hans J Wegner in 1944, the China chair has become an icon of mid-century Danish design. Model number FH4283 in a series of items designed by Wegner and manufactured by cabinetmakers Fritz Hansen, Denmark, this chair was created as a homage to furniture...
Category

Vintage 1960s Danish Mid-Century Modern Chairs

Materials

Leather, Rosewood

Hans J Wegner "2 seater sofa"
By Hans J. Wegner
Located in Shibuya City, JP
This sofa, designed by Wegner, has a simple design yet exudes his pursuit of beauty in form. The compact size and the light impression of the high legs create a design that does not ...
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Scandinavian Modern Sofas

Materials

Fabric, Teak

1950s Chinese Chair by Hans Wegner for Fritz Hansen
By Hans J. Wegner, Fritz Hansen
Located in Shibuya City, JP
The China Chair is the only pure wooden chair in Fritz Hansen's collection. It was inspired by the design of the "Quan Yi" chair from 18th century China and has been in production si...
Category

Antique 1640s Danish Scandinavian Modern Furniture

Materials

Leather, Mahogany, Teak

FH 4283 - China chair in Brazilian rosewood by Hans J. Wegner
By Hans J. Wegner
Located in Copenhagen, DK
FH 4283 - China chair in Brazilian rosewood with black patinated leather seat.
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Scandinavian Modern Armchairs

Materials

Leather, Rosewood

Hans Wegner China chairs by Fritz Hansen Denmark 1967
By Fritz Hansen, Hans J. Wegner
Located in Roosendaal, Noord Brabant
Extraordinary Hans Wegner China chairs designed in 1944 and manufactured by Fritz Hansen in Denmark in 1967. This set of 6 chairs, made of solid rosewood, is an incredibly rare find....
Category

Vintage 1960s Danish Scandinavian Modern Armchairs

Materials

Leather, Rosewood

Hans J. Wegner Pair of Chinese Chairs in Mahogany for Fritz Hansen
By Hans J. Wegner, Fritz Hansen
Located in Copenhagen, DK
Hans J. Wegner Chinese chairs in mahogany. Loose seat cushions upholstered with leather, fitted with buttons. Executed by Fritz Hansen.
Category

1990s Danish Scandinavian Modern Armchairs

Materials

Leather, Mahogany

Hans Wegner for Fritz Hansen Rosewood China Chair, c1960s
By Fritz Hansen, Hans J. Wegner
Located in London, GB
Hans J. Wegner Model FH-4283 China Chair, 1944. Produced by Fritz Hansen in Denmark this version in exquisite Brazilian rosewood is an incredibly rare version of this iconic design made in very limited quantities in the 1960s. The chair retains its original, patinated black leather seat cushion. The China chair was designed by Hans J. Wegner in 1944 and marked a significant departure for producer Fritz Hansen as the only solid wood chair in their collection. Wegner found inspiration for this timeless Classic in antique Chinese armchairs...
Category

Vintage 1960s Danish Scandinavian Modern Lounge Chairs

Materials

Leather, Rosewood

Set of 6 Wegner PP66 "Chinese Chairs" for PP Mobler in Oak and Papercord
By Hans J. Wegner
Located in Seattle, WA
At the Cabinetmakers' Guild's Autumn Exhibition in 1943, Wegner presented his first version of a chair inspired by an old Chinese chair, which he had...
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1990s Danish Mid-Century Modern Side Chairs

Materials

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Pair of Hans J. Wegner Chinese Chairs of Cherrywood for Fritz Hansen
By Fritz Hansen, Hans J. Wegner
Located in Copenhagen, DK
Hans J. Wegner Chinese chairs of cherrywood. Loose seat cushions upholstered with leather, fitted with buttons. Executed by Fritz Hansen.  
Category

Vintage 1970s Danish Scandinavian Modern Armchairs

Materials

Leather, Cherry

Hans Wegner FH-4283 Rosewood China Chair, C1960s
By Fritz Hansen, Hans J. Wegner
Located in London, GB
Hans J. Wegner FH 4283 China chair, 1944. Produced by Fritz Hansen in Denmark this version in exquisite Brazilian rosewood is an incredibly rare version of this iconic design made in very limited quantities in the 1960s. The chair retains its original, patinated black leather seat cushion. The China chair was designed by Hans J. Wegner in 1944 and marked a significant departure for producer Fritz Hansen as the only solid wood chair in their collection. Wegner found inspiration for this timeless Classic in antique Chinese armchairs...
Category

Vintage 1960s Danish Scandinavian Modern Lounge Chairs

Materials

Leather, Rosewood

Hans J. Wegner, a 1977 Limited Edition Walnut Armchair “China Chair”
By Hans J. Wegner
Located in Paris, FR
Hans J. Wegner: A walnut armchair “China chairs”. The China chair was designed by Hans J. Wegner in 1944. Loose seat cushion upholstered with black leather, fitted with buttons. M...
Category

Vintage 1970s Chairs

Materials

Walnut

Hans J. Wegner Chinese Chair of Walnut for Fritz Hansen
By Hans J. Wegner, Fritz Hansen
Located in Copenhagen, DK
Hans J. Wegner Chinese chair of walnut. Loose seat cushion upholstered with black leather, fitted with buttons. Executed by Fritz Hansen. Reverse with paper label FRITZ HANSEN, DE...
Category

Vintage 1960s Danish Scandinavian Modern Armchairs

Materials

Leather, Walnut

1950s Chinese Chair by Hans Wegner for Fritz Hansen
By Fritz Hansen, Hans J. Wegner
Located in Sagaponack, NY
The Chinese Chair designed by Hans Wegner, manufactured by Fritz Hansen. Cherry wood frame featuring a sinuous back and arm design with a natural leather seat cushion. Designed in 19...
Category

Vintage 1950s Danish Scandinavian Modern Chairs

Materials

Cherry

Set of 4 "China Chairs" for Fritz Hansen by Hans Wegner
By Hans J. Wegner
Located in Stamford, CT
Set of 8 rosewood toned, cherry wood "China Chairs" for Fritz Hansen by Hans Wegner. Produced by Fritz Hansen, Denmark. Two chairs from 1982. 6 chairs purchased together with pre 197...
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Mid-Century Modern Armchairs

Materials

Cherry

Pair of Hans Wegner Walnut China Chairs
By Hans J. Wegner, Fritz Hansen
Located in London, GB
Hans J. Wegner FH 4283 China chair, 1944 This incredibly rare version of Wegner's iconic design was produced by Fritz Hansen in Denmark in 1977 in exquisite European walnut in ...
Category

Vintage 1970s Danish Scandinavian Modern Lounge Chairs

Materials

Walnut, Leather

Pair of Hans J. Wegner Chinese Chairs of Cherrywood for Fritz Hansen
By Fritz Hansen, Hans J. Wegner
Located in Copenhagen, DK
Hans J. Wegner Chinese chairs of cherrywood. Loose seat cushion upholstered with red leather, fitted with buttons. Executed by Fritz Hansen, 1969. Reverse with paper label Fritz H...
Category

Vintage 1960s Danish Scandinavian Modern Armchairs

Materials

Leather, Cherry

Hans J. Wegner Chinese Chair for Fritz Hansen
By Hans J. Wegner, Fritz Hansen
Located in Copenhagen, DK
China chair by Hans J. Wegner, 1944. Executed by Fritz Hansen, 1970. Cherry wood and natural tanned leather cushion.
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Scandinavian Modern Armchairs

Materials

Leather, Cherry

"China Chair" PP66 by Hans J. Wegner for PP Mobler, Denmark, Mid-20th Century
By Hans J. Wegner
Located in Delft, NL
"China Chair" PP66 by Hans J. Wegner for PP Mobler, Denmark An oak "China Chair" with armrests and natural woven paperboard seat The PP66 designed by Hans J. Wegner for PP Mobler De...
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Mid-20th Century Danish Mid-Century Modern Dining Room Chairs

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Hans Wegner FH-4283 Rosewood China Chair
By Fritz Hansen, Hans J. Wegner
Located in London, GB
Hans J. Wegner FH 4283 China chair, 1944 Produced by Fritz Hansen in Denmark this version in exquisite Brazilian rosewood is an incredibly rare version of this iconic design made in very limited quantities in the 1960s. The chair retains its original, patinated black leather seat cushion. This example was originally purchased from the Illum Bolighus department store in Copenhagen and the original retailer’s badge is in place under the seat. The China chair was designed by Hans J. Wegner in 1944 and marked a significant departure for producer Fritz Hansen as the only solid wood chair in their collection. Wegner found inspiration for this timeless Classic in antique Chinese armchairs...
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Vintage 1960s Danish Scandinavian Modern Lounge Chairs

Materials

Leather, Rosewood

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When he designed the first edition of his modest Chinese chair — or China chair — Denmark native Hans Wegner (1914–2007) had been reportedly moved by portraits he’d seen of Danish businessmen relaxing in traditional round-backed Ming dynasty–era chairs. While the legendary furniture maker’s tribute to East Asian seating — a minimal cherrywood chair with a curved bentwood back support and removable leather seat cushion — called on Oriental forms that preceded him by hundreds of years, it merge...
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