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1940s Brown Ash and Papercord Peacock Chair by Hans Wegner



Peacock chair, ash, papercord by Hans Wegner, Denmark, 1974 Ashwood frames with teak armrests and original paper cord seat make the iconic peacock chair by Hans J. Wegner a work of art. What makes it special is the fusion of ergonomics and aesthetics. The flat part of the backrest, which gives it its peacock-like appearance, is placed where the shoulders would rest on the back. Manufactured by Johannes Hansen in 1947. After Wegner studied at the Arts & Crafts School in Copenhagen he worked as draftsman for the architecture office of Erik Moller and furniture designer Arne Jacobsen. Next to Finn Juhl, Arne Jacobsen and Borge Mogensen, Hans Wegner is one of the Great Danish designers. It is said that the name of the chair was coined by Finn Juhl when he first saw the chair and noticed its characteristic backrest. (FL_ID 2073).


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    Ships From: Frankfurt, Hessen, Germany
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About the Design

Peacock Chair

Designed by Hans J. Wegner
Not long before he debuted both “The Chair” — the ingeniously, appropriately named piece that exemplifies his dedication to purified form — and the revered and now oft-imitated Wishbone chair, Danish furniture designer Hans Wegner (1914–2007) released the Peacock chair, a gracefully arching, high-backed seat produced for PP Møbler in 1947. Although certain elements of this Wegner design — a woven seat, shapely wooden frame, graceful form — would go on to become nearly synonymous with Danish mid-century furniture, the Peacock (official name: PP550) has roots in another design tradition: the Windsor chair. Recognized by its arched frame and spindle back, the Windsor has long been associated with Amish woodworking communities in the United States, though its origin can be traced back to England and Wales. English settlers brought the seats stateside and they quickly gained popularity in North America, enduring through colonial times and into 20th-century American style. But back to Denmark: While Wegner was a young student at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen (where he enrolled in 1936), he became involved with the Carpenters’ Guild Furniture Exhibits, which showed experimental designs by Danish architects and sparked Wegner’s own interest in playing with traditional notions of design in furniture. He became fascinated with a process of “stripping the old chairs of their outer style and letting them appear in their pure construction,” a method that would inform much of his most important work. Soon after experimenting with traditional Ming chairs in his China chair series, Wegner set his sights on the Windsor, which he adapted in subtle yet significant ways that exemplify his modernist ethos. First, the flattening of the spindles in an arc to follow the posture of the sitter, a nod to the modern notion of designing around the human body. Then, the paper-cord seat, a precursor to the Wishbone in a material designed as a replacement for jute, which was in short supply following World War II. Finally, rendering the frame in ash, a common species in Denmark and a favorite wood among Scandinavian mid-century designers. Legend has it that it was actually Wegner contemporary Finn Juhl who saw the seat and proclaimed its resemblance to the showy bird, with the flattened spindles making up an arc of wood plumage. In any case, the name stuck, and PP Møbler continues to produce the Peacock chair under the moniker to this day.
About the Seller
5 / 5
Located in Frankfurt, Hessen, Germany
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