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Ax chair by Peter Hvidt & Orla Molgaard Nielsen for Fritz Hansen

$2,071.44

About

Ax chair designed by Peter Hvidt & Orla Molgaard Nielsen and produced by Fritz Hansen, Denmark 1950s. The chair is made of a combination of laminated beechwood and teak with a mahogany core. An example of this chair can be found at the Museum of Design in Copenhagen.

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About the Designer

Hvidt & Mølgaard

Warm, exceptionally versatile and crafted with a range of appealing materials, vintage Peter Hvidt and Orla Mølgaard-Nielsen furniture showcases the Danish duo’s penchant for innovation and durable design. For decades, the pair created sleek coffee tables, seductive lounge chairs and other pieces that are characterized by the practicality and elegance commonly attributed to Scandinavian modernism.

Both Hvidt and Mølgaard-Nielsen attended what is now the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, with Mølgaard-Nielsen having completed his studies under the Danish furniture design pioneer and architect Kaare Klint. Trained as an architect and cabinetmaker, Hvidt established his own firm in 1940 and taught at his alma mater for a few years. After they won a design competition held in Stockholm, Hvidt partnered with Mølgaard-Nielsen in 1944 to establish their firm in Copenhagen.

The collaboration between Hvidt and Mølgaard-Nielsen yielded more than 250 designs and lasted over 30 years. Aside from having created a wardrobe for the Queen of Denmark as well as numerous architectural structures, the pair’s flagship achievements include 1944’s teak Portex chair, which is Denmark’s first-ever stacking chair (and is occasionally attributed to Hvidt alone), and the AX chair.

A masterpiece of technical expertise and innovative woodworking, the sculptural AX armchair shares commonalities with the work of legendary Finnish designer Alvar Aalto — whose output included similarly curvaceous seating such as the Paimio armchair, often designed in partnership with his wife, Aino. It features double-curved laminated wood in the seat and back — which could be mass-produced — and is an early example of knock-down furniture. This meant that it could be easily dismantled and assembled at its destination, which rendered the chair economical for transport on cargo ships and therefore could reach a worldwide audience.

While vintage Hvidt & Mølgaard furniture isn’t as popular as the work of Finn Juhl, a like-minded Danish modernist who helped popularize Scandinavian design in America as well as the use of teak in furniture, the innovative AX chair is similarly as expressive and inviting as Juhl’s seating. The AX was designed in collaboration with manufacturer Fritz Hansen during the late 1940s and went into production in 1950. It gave way to a series that includes tables and other types of seating.

Hvidt and Mølgaard-Nielsen collaborated regularly with Fritz Hansen, France & Søn and Søborg Møbelfabrik. Their work can be found in New York’s Museum of Modern Art, Copenhagen’s Design Museum and the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne.

Find vintage Hvidt & Mølgaard dining tables, coffee tables, modular sofas, storage cabinets and more on 1stDibs.

About the Seller
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Located in Ranst, Belgium
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