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Hans J. Wegner Danish 1940s Leather and Oak Model A721 Executive Chair



An exceedingly rare Hans J. Wegner Model A721 cognac leather and oak early Danish Mid-century executive chair for Planmøbel, Denmark 1940. Originally designed by Wegner following his work for Arne Jacobsen and Erik Møller’s ground breaking Rådhus (Aarhus City Hall) project in 1940, the A721, stands out as one of his earliest known chair designs. Along with a number of other chairs like the B123, the Rådhus chairs were handcrafted by Michael Laursen, I.C.A Nielsen and Planmøbel specifically for the project. Originally made in small numbers all the chairs were of uniform construction with solid oak frames matched to leather upholstery and with thick, solid jointing work that complemented the angular forms. Here we also see for the first time, Wegner’s use of the flared arm rest that were a signature design element for every armchair produced for the Rådhus. These flares were either carved into the wood (as in the Council chamber chairs) or added as leather upholstered caps to the top of the arm rests for the office chairs, the B123 and the lounge chairs – and we can see all those details carried through here to the A721. Many of the chairs, along with the other pieces designed by Wegner for the Rådhus, and a handful he designed at the same time, went into full production with Planmøbel and the A721 was featured in their early catalogues. All the furniture pieces commissioned by Planmøbel had elements redesigned by Wegner for production. This can be seen in the later models of the A721 where the base and metal rise and tilt function were made much heavier than the original - but there’s a lot to be said for how elegant, and also how hands on and eminently practical the original mechanism was: just a simple angled lever for the height adjustment and a thick heavy spring that counterbalanced the tilt. The tilt function allows the chair to tilt forwards and downwards (5cm range of movement) as well as backwards (8cm range of movement), and the seat height is adjustable within a 10cm range from 46 – 56cm. This chair is presented in its original condition with, as far as we can tell, the original upholstery that features the piped edge leather seat and back along with the leather arm rests and an iron tacked hessian base. All in all the chair remains in very good vintage condition with wear to the tops of the stained oak arms and the leather commensurate with its 80 years of life. Dimensions H90 x W62 X D60cm Seat height: adjustable from 46 – 56cm Arm height: Based on seat height adjustment + 10cm from 70 – 80cm Tilt: Forwards/downwards 5cm range of movement: Backwards; 8cm range of movement.


  • Creator
    Hans J. Wegner (Designer)
  • Dimensions
    Height: 35.44 in (90 cm)Width: 24.41 in (62 cm)Depth: 23.63 in (60 cm)Seat Height: 18.12 in (46 cm)
  • Style
    Mid-Century Modern (Of the Period)
  • Materials and Techniques
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
  • Condition
    Wear consistent with age and use.
  • Seller Location
    Highclere, GB
  • Reference Number
    Seller: HW A7211stDibs: LU4278230486182

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    Ships From: Highclere, United Kingdom
  • Return Policy

    A return for this item may be initiated within 14 days of delivery.

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About the Designer

Hans J. Wegner

Best known for his chairs and seating pieces — though a master of many furniture types like sofas and tablesHans Wegner was a prolific designer whose elegant, often ebullient, forms and devotion to the finest methods in joinery made "Danish Modern" a popular byword for stylish, well-made furniture in the mid-20th century.

Wegner considered himself a carpenter first and a furniture designer second. Like his peers Arne Jacobsen and Finn Juhl, Wegner believed that striking aesthetics in furniture were based on a foundation of practicality: a chair must be comfortable and sturdy before it is chic.

In keeping with that tenet, several of Wegner’s best chair designs, seen in dealer listings below, have their roots in traditional seating forms. The Peacock chair (designed in 1947) is a throne-like adaptation of the Windsor chair; pieces from the China chair series (begun in 1944) as well as the 1949 Wishbone chair, with its distinctive Y-shaped back splat, are derived from 17th-century Ming seating pieces, as is the upholstered Ox chair (1960). Wegner’s comfy Papa Bear chair (1951) is an almost surreally re-scaled English wingback chair.

Wegner’s most representative piece, the Round chair (1949), gained a footnote in political history when it was used on the TV stage of the first Kennedy-Nixon debate of 1960. That chair, along with Wegner’s more bravura designs, for example the 1963 Shell chair, with its curved surfboard-shaped seat, bring a quietly sculptural presence to a room. Wegner was a designer who revered his primary material — wood — and it shows. His wood gathers patina and character with age; every Hans Wegner piece testifies to the life it has led.

About the Seller
Located in Highclere, United Kingdom
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Established in 2009
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12 sales on 1stDibs
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