Børge Mogensen Buyer’s Guide: Iconic

This (series of) blogpost(s) is different. Usually, I introduce a piece of qualitative design here, be it from long ago or a brand new product. This time however, I succumb to my dedication to my design hero: Børge Mogensen. In this post I offer you a short Buyer’s Guide if you  consider to buy one of Mogensen’s design without the need to worry about financial resources…

Mogensen home

Mogensen’s own home: 2213 sofa and Spanish chairs

Let’s fancy again. You love Mogensen’s designs and you have the money to buy whatever you want, without financial limits… The good news is: you hardly can buy anything wrong. The bad news however is that everyone will suppose you will buy one of Mogensen’s leather chairs (2204 or 2207), his famous sofa (2213), or a (pair of) Spanish chair(s). These, of course, would all be very fine choices indeed. No wonder, since some of these were Mogensen’s choice of his own home. But let’s suppose you have the urgent wish to avoid those more or less obvious choices. What if you want to buy something different? Let me suggest a couple of alternatives.

Consider the Hunting chair. More exclusive in comparison with the Spanish chair. Less practical as well… (it’s seat height is iconic low…). But it is tremendously beautiful. Mogensen designed the hunting lodge he exposed at the Snedkerlaugets Møbeludstilling in 1950. Imagine you would supplement the hunting chair by buying a hunting table (with folding legs), which Mogensen designed for the same exposition. A superb combination according to me.

But perhaps you are looking for something really different. What do you think of his Sleigh chair. Mogensen designed in 1953, before he started his collaboration with Fredericia, and made by Tage Kristiansen. It shows resemblance with Wegner’s Papa Bear, not – I would suggest – because Mogensen copied Wegner’s design. But because both designers used classic chair types as a source of inspiration. Mogensen’s sleigh chair is very rare (and expensive), so you will have to look very hard if you want to buy one. It should of course have an accompanying ottoman as well. And if you’d ask me, a light colour (variations of white) suits it best. This really is an iconic piece.

As it comes to sofas one of Mogensen’s most iconic designs, is his Coupé Sofa (2192). It is one of his lateste designs, from 1971. The sofa was inspired by the British hall porter’s chair, which is a classic wing chair designed to retain the heat from the open fireplaces. Hence the name ‘Coupé Sofa’, because it encloses you just like the comfortable seats in first-class train coupés. I really love it.

Finally, I want to point you to another direction. Mogensen designed a series of superb (modular) cabinets for FDB, which were produced by CM Madsen in the 1950’s. These cabinets were inspired by Chinese designs and are incredibly beautiful. The design is invariably sober, simple, but very refined. The true excellence is to be found in details like the handles. In the late fifties Mogensen once again made some beautiful cabinets, this time for P. Lauritsen and Son. Any of these cabinets, sideboards or chest drawers will be a good choice and worth the money. It would add a typical Mogensen feeling to your home: not showy, but instead breathing a timeless beauty.

© Text: Qualitative Design


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