Profiling the Masters: Arne Jacobsen

Arne Jacobsen Portrait

Did you know Arne Jacobsen trained as a mason before studying at the Royal Danish Academy of Arts in Copenhagen? There, he was influenced by the work of Le Corbusier, Gunnar Asplund, and Mies van der Rohe. Functionality and craftsmanship were key.

According to Design Within Reach, Jacobsen bought a plywood chair designed by Charles Eames and installed it in his own studio as inspiration. While Jacobsen’s famous relationship with Fritz Hansen began back in 1934, it was 1952 that started a domino of successes, such as the Ant Chair:

the Ant Chair

the Series 7:

Series 7 Chair

the Egg:

the Egg Chair

the Swan:

the Swan Chair

As a designer, Jacobsen prototyped for everything from furniture to textiles to silverware. He was an architect too, where work includes the Bellavista housing estate and fully integrated works like the SAS Air Terminal and the Royal Hotel Copenhagen.


Image via Vancouver Art Gallery

For the Royal Hotel, Jacobsen designed every detail – from the site-specific furniture, the Swan and the Egg, to lighting, cutlery, and even ashtrays.

Arne Jacobsen collection

Room 606 in the SAS Royal Hotel in Copenhagen

His designs, now considered iconic, contribute to Jacobsen’s position as a revered part of design history. Not only is he a part of national Danish heritage, but a formative figure in the way we regard Scandinavian design today. With clean, sculptural lines and an emphasis on functionality and thus durability, Jacobsen’s designs remain as relevant today as ever.

Which of Jacobsen’s design is your favorite?


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