Ejner Larsen and Aksel Bender Madsen - 20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale Hong Kong Thursday, July 9, 2020 | Phillips
  • Description

    A Century of Modern Design: the Collection of Kai-Yin Lo
    Hong Kong-based collector Kai-Yin Lo amassed an extraordinary collection that reflects inspiration, innovation and scholarship. The collection of modern and contemporary design is global in its scope and vast in its chronological sweep.


  • Provenance

    Peter Hvidt, acquired as a gift from Willy Beck, 1961
    Thence by descent
    Dansk Møbelkunst, Copenhagen
    Acquired from the above by the present owner, 2012

  • Literature

    Svend Erik Møller and Viggo Sten Møller, Dansk Møbelkunst, Københavns snedkerlaugs møbeludstilling 1927-1951, Copenhagen, 1951, p. 91 for a similar example
    'Allestimento per il mobile singolo alla Triennale', Domus, no. 300, November 1954, p. 60
    Esbjørn Hiort, Modern Danish Furniture, New York, 1956, p. 46
    Grete Jalk, ed., Dansk Møbelkunst gennem 40 aar, Volume 4: 1957-1966, Copenhagen, 1987, pp. 79-81
    Noritsugu Oda, Danish Chairs, San Francisco, 1996, p. 140
    Christian Holmsted Olesen, Wegner: just one good chair, exh. cat., Design Museum Denmark, Copenhagen, 2014, p. 165

  • Catalogue Essay

    The present model chair was exhibited at the ‘Copenhagen Cabinetmakers’ Guild’, Kunstindustrimuseet, 18 September–4 October 1959, Stand 22.

    The present lot is Ejner Larsen and Aksel Bender Madsen’s most recognisable design and is emblematic of Scandinavian Design’s “Golden Era” due to its elegant organic form and exceptional craftsmanship. The collaborators originally presented the chair in 1949 at the Copenhagen Cabinetmakers’ Guild Exhibition. In 1959, master cabinetmaker Willy Beck began to produce the chair (of which the present lot is an example) and it was this version of the chair that was included in the critically acclaimed exhibition Art of Denmark at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, hence the chair’s colloquial name. Whereas previous iterations of this chair were more austere in their construction, the present model is much more sculptural, particularly in the hourglass-shaped seat. It is also a rare and especially fine example of this model, as it was made with the most exquisite materials available —rosewood and leather from the famous Danish saddlers Dahlman—and it also has an impressive provenance. Willy Beck, the cabinetmaker, gave the chair to the Danish architect and designer Peter Hvidt in 1961. The chair remained in Hvidt’s family until it was acquired in 2012.

Eternal Form - A Century of Modern and Contemporary Design


Rare ‘Metropolitan’ armchair, model no. 2842/L

designed 1949, executed circa 1961
Brazilian rosewood, leather
79 x 75.7 x 50 cm. (31 1/8 x 29 3/4 x 19 5/8 in.)
Executed by master cabinetmaker Willy Beck and leatherwork by Dahlman, Copenhagen, Denmark. Underside with metal label impressed PRODUCED BY/CABINET-MAKER/WILLY BECK/COPENHAGEN/DENMARK/ARCHITECTS: EJNER LARSEN AND A. BENDER MADSEN and leather impressed DAHLMAN. Designed 1949, executed circa 1961.

HK$80,000 - 120,000 

Sold for HK$193,750

Contact Specialist
Danielle So
Associate Specialist, Head of Day Sale

20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale

Hong Kong Auction 9 July 2020