1 of 5 images

Finnish Dish Origami by Kaj Franck for Arabia of Finland, White Ceramic, 1960s



White, oval multifaceted ceramic tray with clear gloss glaze. The geometric pattern like the folds of origami reflects light differently on every facet. Designed in the 1960s by Kaj Franck for Arabia of Finland. Two available. Kaj Franck (born in Finland, 1911-1989) studied furniture design in 1932 at the Central School of Industrial Design in Helsinki. After school he worked as an illustrator, interior designer, decorator and textile designer before being inducted into the army forces in 1939. In 1945, Kaj Franck became the head designer of the company Arabia of Finland. Kai Franck joined the glass company littala after winning the 1947 littala glass design competition alongside Tapio Wirkkala. Kaj Frank designed the now classic Littala water jugs series between 1946 and 1950.  


  • Condition
  • Dimensions

    H 1.5 in. x W 10 in. x D 12 in.

    H 3.81 cm x W 25.4 cm x D 30.48 cm

  • Seller location
    Chicago, IL
  • Reference number

Shipping, Returns & Payment

  • Online Payment Methods
    1stdibs accepts the following payment methods
  • Item Invoice
    Generate an invoice that you can customize and print.

About Kaj Franck (Designer)

Kaj Gabriel Franck was a leading figure in 20th-century Finnish design, specializing in ceramics and glass. As the creative director of Arabia Ceramics, now part of Iittala, he, along with fellow Finns Timo Sarpaneva and Tapio Wirkkala, helped popularize the bright, warm and curvy aesthetic of Scandinavian modernism. Design Forum Finland’s Kaj Franck Design Prize, established in 1992 and awarded each year around his birthday, is among the country’s most prestigious honors for designers.

Franck was born in 1911 in the city of Vyborg, which now belongs to Russia, but was then part of the Grand Duchy of Finland. He studied furniture design at the Central School of Industrial Design in Helsinki, and after graduating in 1932, worked as a catalogue illustrator for the Riihimäki glassworks, exploring interior and textile design on the side. Having served in the Finnish armed forces during World War II, he joined Arabia in 1945 as their head of design. He remained with the company for many years, steering its line of tableware in a dynamic new direction. Franck professed an aversion to superfluous ornament. His ceramic designs were nevertheless complex and eye-catching, animated with playful, geometric forms. One of his most famous creations for Arabia was the Origami dish from the early 1960s, a glossyall-white serving piece resembling a subtly folded piece of paper with four shallow sections for holding food.

Although his Arabia ceramics became household staples for consumers in Scandinavia and beyond, Franck is better known among collectors for his glass designs, particularly those he created for Iittala starting in the late 1940s. In a 1947 Iittala-sponsored glass competition, Franck shared the top prize with Tapio Wirkkala. In 1950, he designed the company’s iconic Kartio series of pressed-glass pitchers and glasses, which came in different colors that consumers could “mix and match” rather than having to buy a homogeneous set. In 1977, Franck redesigned the series, renamed Teemaa.

Franck’s designs for Iittala embodied the Finnish concept of pelkistetty, which literally means “reduced” and in the design world refers to the pared-down, minimal qualities of modernism. This principle, evidenced in objects like this elegant, unfussy set of four jewel-toned drinking glasses from the 1960s, informed Franck’s view of the manufacturing process as well. Critical of mass-production and consumerism, he was one of the country’s first professionals in his field to advocate recycling. He became known as the “conscience of Finnish design,” a role he embraced as a professor and later artistic director at University of Art and Design in Helsinki. In honor of Franck’s 100th birthday, in 2011, Iittala reissued Kartio glasses, Teema tableware and Purnukka jars, among other of his designs that retain their contemporary feel decades after their creation.

About the Seller

1stdibs seller since 2015
Typical response time: 1 hr
Located in Chicago, IL
You may also contact the seller by phoneCall seller through 1stdibs
More From This Seller
Large Burl Wood Catchall Sculpture Centerpiece ...
American Decorative Dishes and Vide-Poche
Large organic burlwood vide-poche, made in the 1960s. Sculptural piece of organic modern design with craftsmanship that respects the natural form of the wood. Auburn tone with swirli...
White Mouth Vase by Mancioli for Raymor, Handma...
Raymor, Mancioli Pottery
Italian Vases
Handmade in Italy, this white glazed ceramic mouth vase was created by Mancioli for Raymor USA in the 1970s. Marked Mancioli / Raymor. Playful decorative object or as a vessel for fl...
White Pottery Candleholder Made in Italy for Ra...
Italian Candlesticks
Ceramic, Pottery
Pottery candleholder made in Italy for Raymor. Bell shaped. White speckle texture with thin black lines and light red dots. Singular look, discreet and charismatic. Good for night ou...
Danish Pendant by Preben Dahl for Hans Følsgaar...
Preben Dahl
Danish Chandeliers and Pendants
Vintage Scandinavian hanging lamp pendant by Preben Dal for Hans Følsgaard, made in Denmark, 1960s. Unique European lighting with a joyful and singular presence, and geometric shapes...
You May Also Like
Scandinavian Modern Glass Vase by Kaj Franck fo...
Kaj Franck, Nuutajarvi Notsjo
Finnish Vases
Art Glass
Small “KF 106? USVA (mist) glass vase by Kaj Franck for Nuutajärvi Notsjö in Finland. Lobed vase in foamy glass cased in clear. Engraved “K.Franck Nuutajärvi Nottsjö - 57?.
English Blue and White Chinoiserie Plate
Davenport Porcelain
English Serving Pieces
English blue and white chinoiserie plate. Davenport Staffordshire oval plate in the "Chinoiserie Ruins" pattern with reticulated border. Ex-museum collection. England, cir...
Finnish Modern Rice Grains Porcelain Bowl by Ho...
Arabia, Friedl Holzer-Kjellberg
Finnish Porcelain
A terrific 'Rice Grains' bowl by the Finnish modernist designer Friedl Holzer-Kjellberg. Designed for Arabia Porcelain Co., the line was produced in the 1970s. The base is mar...
Carved Marble Lotus Bowl
Indian Decorative Bowls
A carved white marble lotus bowl from India.
1960s Gold Imari Green and White Dish with Peac...
Listed is a beautiful, 1960s gold imari, green and white dish. The piece has a gorgeous peacock motif with gold accents. Marked ‘Gold Imari’ on bottom side.
Large Art Glass Bowl by Oiva Toikka for Iittala...
Oiva Toikka
Finnish Decorative Bowls
Art Glass
Charming crystal fruit bowl or centerpiece in the Flora series by Oiva Toikka. More pieces, sizes, colors available. Please contact for location.
Art Deco Silver and Bakerlite Tazza, circa 1930
Silver Plate
Art Deco Tazza. Silver plated with Bakerlite stem, circa 1930.
1960s Eva Englund Glass Hand Sculptural Catchal...
Eva Englund
Swedish Abstract Sculptures
Offered is a gorgeous, 1960s Eva Englund glass hand sculpture. The sculptural catchall is heavy and has no discoloration in the glass.

Why Shop on 1stdibs?

Learn More

Only Vetted, Professional Sellers

Buyer Protection Guaranteed

Fully Insured Global Deliveries