Illum Wikkelsø 1919-1999
Illum Wikkelsø was trained as a cabinetmaker in 1938, and graduated from the school of Arts and Craft (now, the Danish Design School) in 1941. Upon working for the Danish cabinetmaker Jacob Kjær and the architects Hvidt & Mølgaard, he set up his independent studio in 1954.
Illum Wikkelsø’ furniture design is founded in craftsmanship, in a linage from a generation of cabinetmakers, upholsterers and furniture producers from before the 1950s. An exoticism repeats in whole as in parts of brown leather upholstered high back model V11. Its pyramidal legs in Brazilian Rosewood refer to the diagonal lines of back and armrest.
Experiments in the 1960s with curved organic modernism leading to a three legged easy chair for the Danish furniture maker Holger Christiansen. Curvy triangles are repeated in three upholstered tongues inviting to alternative reclining positions.
Adapted to the demands of industrial production-rationality, his armchair from 1973 was made as a part of an office system developed for the Danish furniture maker P. Schultz. It preserves upholstery in seat and high back mixed with a frame of flat steel and castors, melting comfort with demands of stability and mobility of the modern functional office.
Literature and media source: Lars Dybdahl, Dansk design 1945-1975, Valby: Borgen, 2006 Frederik Sieck, Nutidig Dansk Møbeldesign, København: Nyt Nordisk Forlag Arnold Busck, 1999 Per H. Hansen and Klaus Petersen, Den store Danske møbelguide, København: Lindhardt og Ringhof, 2005