Hans J. Wegner: The first masterpieces
The four iconic chair designs by Hans J. Wegner are a testament to the visionary design approach that has shaped the Carl Hansen & Søn philosophy for over 65 years. The 1950 chairs are a tribute to outstanding collaboration, functional design, and passionate craftsmanship.
Hans J. Wegner’s chairs are true masterpieces. Few would have predicted that, during his first weeks working with Carl Hansen & Søn, Hans J. Wegner would develop a chair series that would later be deemed iconic examples of modern Danish design.
The CH22, CH23, CH24 and CH25 chairs all embody different sculptural expressions of Wegner’s unmistakable skill with wood and his deep understanding of the relationship between form and comfort. The iconic CH24, better known as the Wishbone Chair, and the CH25 lounge chair have been in continuous production at Carl Hansen & Søn since they were introduced in 1950. The CH22 and CH23 chairs, both out of production for various periods of time, have returned, as well as the CH26 dining chair – originally only a working drawing and manufactured for the first time in 2016. Today, Wegner’s first masterpieces arereunited as a tribute to Wegner’s mastery and vision.
“The first chairs that Wegner created for Carl Hansen & Søn were regarded as extremely avant-garde at the time. There was a completely new and exciting mode of expression to the work, but also a simplicity that appealed to many people,” explains Carl Hansen & Søn CEO Knud Erik Hansen. “The first chairs had a totally unique aesthetic and their quality was excellent. Each chair had its own original design with characteristic elements that were subsequently included in other chair designs."
It was Knud Erik’s father, Holger Hansen, who approached the young Wegner about collaborating with the company, a partnership that went on to define the quality and characteristics of the company’s pursuit of the finest craftsmanship, creativity and collaboration. At Carl Hansen & Søn’s factory in Gelsted on the Danish island of Funen, talented furniture-makers and weavers continue to manufacture the iconic designs and honor the legacy of excellent craftsmanship – just as in the early days of Carl Hansen & Søn more than 110 years ago.
Wegner’s early designs share common traits that mark them out as uniquely his and reflect his respect for ergonomics and the tactility of natural materials. All the chairs feature hand-woven paper cord: the CH25 lounge chair uses 400 meters and it takes an experienced weaver ten hours to create the chair’s woven back and seat.
The CH24 Wishbone Chair is famous for its curved back- and armrest, made from a single piece of solid, steam-bent wood. Each paper cord seat is expertly hand-woven for optimal durability, making the chair a timeless investment and a coveted collector’s piece.
Christian Holmsted Olesen, Head of Exhibitions and Collections at Designmuseum Danmark says: “The first four chairs possess all the properties that characterize Danish Design: they are based on a long history of craftsmanship and are all inspired by historical furniture types. This means that many people view them as timeless. They are made from natural materials and are therefore both sustainable and durable. They feature organic forms and have a human dimension – and, even with their strong artistic expression, are clearly designed for everyday use.”
Wegner’s early masterpieces for Carl Hansen & Søn were created to be used as well as admired, and it is their inherent, unique and century-defining design characteristics that in turn honor Wegner as a true master of furniture design.
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When you choose a Carl Hansen & Søn product, you gain more than just a piece of furniture. You become part of a proud tradition of distinctive and beautiful craftsmanship, where nothing has been left to chance. The world’s largest manufacturer of furniture designed by Hans J. Wegner, we also produce works by renowned design masters such as Arne Jacobsen, Børge Mogensen, Ole Wanscher, Kaare Klint, Poul Kjærholm, Mogens Koch, Bodil Kjær and Tadao Ando. Carl Hansen & Søn represents over 100 years of Danish design history and our furniture is sold all over the world.