Egg Chair – a modern classic

2012 September 28
by Furn Warrior

The Arne Jacobsen Egg Chair was the culminations of a new technique that Jacobsen pioneered with the Egg™. Like a sculptor, Jacobsen first sculpted the Egg out of clay in his garage so he could perfect the shape. He then molded the Egg

Chair out of a strong foam inner shell under the upholstery. The result is a wholly unique shape, meaning the Jacobsen Egg Chair affords privacy in otherwise public spaces.

The Jacobsen Egg™ first appeared in the reception areas of the Royal Hotel, in Copenhagen. The commission to design every element of the hotel building as well as the furniture was Jacobsen’s grand opportunity to put his theories of integrated design and architecture into practice. The Egg is one of the triumphs of Jacobsen’s total design – a sculptural contrast to the building’s almost exclusively vertical and horizontal surfaces.
Danish Design Store is an Authorized Dealer for the Fritz Hansen Collection. All products are made by Fritz Hansen.

Arne Jacobsen is one of the grandfathers of modern Danish furniture and the minimalist Danish style. While Arne Jacobsen (1902-1971) was also a successful architect, he is best remembered for his simple, yet elegant and functional chair designs.

The cooperation between Arne Jacobsen and Fritz Hansen dates back to 1934. But it wasn’t until 1952 that Jacobsen made a break-through: the Jacobsen Ant™ Chair. The Jacobsen Series 7™ Chair quickly followed in 1955. This propelled Jacobsen and Fritz Hansen’s names into furniture history.

At the end of the 50s Arne Jacobsen was the lead architect for the Royal Hotel in Copenhagen, and designed the famous Egg™ Chair, the Swan™ Chair, the Swan™ Sofa and Series 3300™ Chairs. Arne Jacobsen was and is an admired and outstanding designer. While the significance of Arne Jacobsen’s buildings was less appreciated, his furniture and other design work have become national and international heritage.

History of the Garden Egg Chair

The garden egg chair is a classic among designer furniture made by the hands of Peter Ghyczy in 1968, as head of the design department at Elastogran / Reuter. Peter Ghyczy was experimenting with newly developed synthetic materials and one of the results which drew the most attention was the unique and complex design of the garden egg chair.
From Suitcase to Egg Chair

The original idea was to design a portable piece of design furniture which could be put up and closed without having to take the seating pads out. The first design of the garden egg chair was not egg-shaped at all, but looked more like a suitcase. Only little by little Peter Ghyczy realized that the design was going to be an egg and so the garden egg chair was born.
40 Years Garden Egg Chair

In 2008, the garden egg chair reached the land-mark age of 40. This unique design chair has not stood still in its development during these years, as more suitable materials being substituted for previous ones as technology progressed. In the beginning, the garden egg chair was manufactured by the East-German firm VEB-Synthese-Werk in Swarzheide, but in 1998 the garden egg chair found its way home again and the egg chair’s base of production is now Ghyczy Selection BV in the Netherlands.

The Egg is a chair designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1958 for Radisson SAS hotel in Copenhagen. It is manufactured by Republic of Fritz Hansen.

The Egg was designed in a typical Jacobsen style, using state-of-the-art material.

It is believed to be inspired by Eero Saarinen’s “Womb chair”, from which it gains some traits. In many respects, though, the Egg is a much more complete design. Related to the Egg is the Swan and, to some degree, many of Jacobsen’s plywood chairs such as “7″, the Ant, the Cigar, the Grand Prix-chair, the Pot, the Drop and the Giraffe.

The Egg was (as was the Swan) designed as a couch also – though the actual piece was thought to be a figment of someone’s imagination, fed by the existence of the Swan-couch. While the Swan-couch is still in production, only a handful of Egg-couches have ever been made. A few were made for the Radisson Hotel, and a few years back, some were made as a “special edition” couch. The price was quite high – about 400.000 dkr., the equivalent of roughly 75,000 USD.

The reason for the limited production of the Egg-couch, besides the wish for exclusivity, is the difficulty involved in making it, plus a design-”flaw”- the couch is too big to be covered by two entire cow-hides, which is only just possible with the Egg-chair. This leaves a very visible stitching down the middle of the couch – definitely not in Jacobsen spirit. This problem can, however, be solved by making the upholstery in fabric rather than leather.

According to a New York Times article,[1] the Egg chair has also been used by McDonalds as part of a high-concept redesign of one of its restaurants in London. Furthermore The Egg is in McDonalds on Nørrebrogade in Copenhagen, amongst other furniture by Arne Jacobsen, although some are imitations.[2]

The newly renovated Terminal 2 at San Francisco International Airport features the Egg in the boarding area.

Sometimes the original is still the best. Designed in 1958 by Arne Jacobsen, the Egg Chair ($5,934-$15,038) is pretty expensive today, but is also functional history. It swivels and tilts, a rarity in chairs with this much style, and comes covered in Canyon fabric by Kvadrat, which consists of 85 percent new wool, 15 percent nylon. Sophistication, comfort, and striking looks — a true design classic.

Arne Jacobsenarne jacobsen(1902-1971) Arne Jacobsen bought a plywood chair designed by Charles Eames and installed it in his own studio, where it inspired one of the most commercially successful chair models in design history. The three-legged Ant chair (1951) sold in millions and is considered a classic today. It consists of two simple elements: tubular steel legs and a springy seat and back formed out of a continuous piece of plywood in a range of vivid colors. Jacobsen began training as a mason before studying at the Royal Danish Academy of Arts, Copenhagen where he won a silver medal for a chair that was then exhibited at the 1925 Exposition Internationale des Art Decoratifs in Paris. Influenced by Le Corbusier, Gunnar Asplund and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Jacobsen embraced a functionalist approach from the outset. He was among the first to introduce modernist ideas to Denmark and create industrial furniture that built upon on its craft-based design heritage. First among Jacobsen’s important architectural commissions was the Bellav ista housing project, Copenhagen (1930-1934). Best known and most fully integrated works, are the SAS Air Terminal and the Royal Hotel Copenhagen for which Jacobsen designed every detail from sculptural furnishings such as his elegant Swan and Egg chairs (1957-1958) to textiles, lighting, ashtrays and cutlery. During the 1960′s, Jacobsen’s most important work was a unified architectural and interior design scheme for St. Catherine’s College, Oxford, which, like his earlier work for the Royal Hotel, involved the design of site-specific furniture. Jacobsen’s work remains appealing and fresh today, combining free-form sculptural shapes with the traditional attributes of Scandinavian design, material and structural integrity related products

The Royal Hotel in Copenhagen required a new design for chairs to be placed in the reception and lobby areas. In 1958, Arne Jacobsen fulfilled that requirement with the original egg chair. Since then, this egg chair has become an important facet of Danish furniture design worldwide. The egg chair is unique in that its shape offers users privacy that would otherwise be lost in public spaces. The egg, whether or not it is accompanied by the ottoman, is the ideal modern classic chair for homes, waiting areas, and lounges, particularly for those who want to keep their work or naps to themselves.

As a famous architect and designer, Arne Jacobsen initiated the Fritz Hansen Corporation in 1934. Jacobsen and Hansen’s names were moved to the forefront of modern furniture history in 1952 with the production of the Ant chairs and the Series 7 chairs. When the egg, the Swan, as well as the Series 3300 were introduced during the 1950s, Arne Jacobsen became an admired designer whose modern chair and furniture designs were considered a major part of international and national heritage.

The egg chair is designed to mimic an egg with a synthetic shell made from polyurethane foam, reinforced with fiberglass. The shell offers users an adjustable tilt which can be altered based upon the weight of the user. The base of the egg chair is a four star with a welded steel tube. It is injected into molded aluminum and has a satin-polish on the steel tube. The egg chair is upholstered with leather or fabric and can be produced with an automatic return mechanism. The egg chair is 33.8 inches in width, 31.1 inches in depth, and has a height of 42 inches. The seat is 14.5 inches high with a total cost of over six thousand dollars.

Arne Jacobsen is popularized for the egg chair design. Charged with designing a unique chair for the Radisson SAS hotel located in Copenhagen, Jacobsen produced the now-famous egg chair. Jacobsen employed the typical style with the egg chair utilizing only state-of-the-art materials. It is said that his egg chair design was inspired by the womb chair from Eero Saarinen. Sharing similar traits, the egg offers a complex design. The Egg chair was designed as a chair and a couch, though the couch version has only been seen on rare occasions. A few designs were released for the Radisson Hotel but the special edition versions run the cost of sixty thousand dollars.

The limited production of the egg-couch was not only due to the desire to remain exclusive but because making it remains very challenging. The couch is too large to be covered by two entire cow-hides, but the egg chair does not have this flaw, making it easier to produce. In this case, the couch version of the egg chair shows a visible stitching in the middle which is far from the Jacobsen spirit.

The Egg chair has become so popular because of its high quality and unique design that the McDonalds Corporation included one on a London-based restaurant as part of the redesign concept the company employed. Copenhagen included another egg chair in one of their McDonalds’ locations.

The Egg chair was designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1958. The materials used include foam, upholstery, and aluminum and was manufactured by the Fritz Hansen Corporation, owned in part by Jacobsen and Hansen, in Denmark. Arne Jacobsen produced the first egg chair in his garage using a plaster cast. Now the synthetic egg shell is padded with cold foam after which the shell is covered with fabric while the aluminum star-shaped base is covered with leather.

Designed in 1956, Arne Jacobsen’s piece was commonly known as the Egg Chair – although many similar copies carried the same name. This iconic piece is considered an envelope pusher for designs of the day. Not only was it the first groundbreaking example of furniture with an inner molded core, it came from a designer with such forward thinking ideals that he was bounds ahead of even ‘pioneer’ status. From the original design of the initial Egg Chair, Jacobsen chose to decadently cover his art initially in leather, and then later progressed to other classic materials. Keeping in mind that the late 50’s were a time of vinyl, plastics, PVC and hyper-geometric images, the Arne Jacobsen Chair’s undulating diversions create a glorious visual dance even to the untrained eye. Today, collectors of examples of the master-class of furniture makers can look forward to spending upwards of $20,000.00 for an original in good condition. The Arne Jacobsen chair is available in white, red, black, black leatherette and orange leatherette.

Inspired by the works of Charles and Ray Eames, Arne Jacobsen is considered one of the most influential furniture designers of the last century. His Egg Chair , designed in 1956 is perhaps the single-most recognizable icon of 20th century interior design. True to the original, this quality reproductions is better than others.

Arne Jacobsen (1902–1971) was the renaissance-man of Danish architecture and design. He mastered the whole gamut of the profession, and whether the object in question was a high-rise hotel, a chair or a door handle, he worked with an obvious enthusiasm and vigour.

Jacobsen was admitted to the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in 1924 and graduated in 1927. Soon after, in 1929, he won recognition for “The House of the Future” project, where he, in collaboration with Flemming Lassen, presented a daring vision, complete with helipad on the rooftop.

Throughout his career Jacobsen maintained a high level of productivity. He designed a great number of single-family houses, summerhouses, larger apartment buildings such as the Bellavista complex, from 1934, and several public buildings, such as Søllerød and Århus Town Halls, both completed in 1942 and the Munkegaard School, from 1957. In 1964, St. Catherine’s College at Oxford University was inaugurated, earning him international fame.

But Jacobsen’s finest piece of work is perhaps the Royal Hotel in Copenhagen, completed in 1960. Here his talent was really brought out. In everything, from the elegant curtain-wall structure; over the furniture; the lamps; the textiles; the door handles; right down to the cutlery in the restaurant, Jacobsen’s steady hand was evident. Here, some of his best furniture was first introduced. The full, sculptural shapes of “The Egg” and “The Swan”, now considered modern furniture icons, constituted an interesting contrast to the angular, stringent building.

Another well-known Jacobsen creation is “the Ant Chair” designed in 1951 and introduced in 1952. This elegant, stackable, three-legged piece came about as a result of Jacobsen’s great interest in modern materials and new production techniques. The narrow ‘waist’, which gave the chair its name, was necessary because of Jacobsen’s wish to keep the bent plywood seat and back in one piece. A four-legged sister, “the 7 Chair”, designed in 1955, went on to become a major success with more than 5 millions copies sold worldwide.

The Egg is a chair designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1958 for Radisson SAS hotel in Copenhagen. It is manufactured by Republic of Fritz Hansen.
The Egg was designed in a typical Jacobsen style, where there was no fear of pushing the material to its limit, and often using entirely new materials to make his designs come true.
It is believed to be inspired by Eero Saarinens “Womb chair”, from which it gains some traits. In many respects, though, the Egg is a much more complete design.

Related to the Egg is the Swan and, to some degree, many of Jacobsen’s plywood chairs such as “7″, the Ant, the Cigar, the Grand Prix-chair, the Pot, the Drop and the Giraffe.
The Egg was (as was the Swan) designed as a couch also – though the actual piece was thought to be a figment of someone’s imagination, fed by the existence of the Swan-couch. While the Swan-couch is still in production, only a handful of Egg-couches have ever been made. A few were made for the Radisson Hotel, and a few years back, some were made as a “special edition” couch. The price was quite high – about 400.000 dkr., the equivalent of 60,000 USD.

The reason for the limited production of the Egg-couch, besides the wish for exclusivity, is the difficulty involved in making it, plus a design-”flaw”- the couch is too big to be covered by two entire cow-hides, which is only just possible with the Egg-chair. This leaves a very visible stitching down the middle of the couch – definitely not in Jacobsen spirit. This problem can, however, be solved by making the upholstery in fabric rather than leather.
According to a New York Times article, the Egg chair has also been used by McDonalds as part of a high-concept redesign of one of its restaurants in London. Furthermore The Egg is in McDonalds on Nørrebrogade in Copenhagen, amongst orther furniture by Arne Jacobsen, although some being imitations.

Encase yourself in a lovely reclining Egg Chair by Arne Jacobsen, from Fritz Hansen. This iconic chair has got to be one of the cosiest and most adorable chairs we’ve ever known, and is now more popular than ever before. The adjustable tilt fitting can be adjusted to the individual weight of the user so that it suits you perfectly. With its ergonomically designed shape, it’s ideal to nestle into, and will be a smashing hit with your family and guests alike. It sits perched atop a 4 pronged star-shaped satin-chromed base. The Egg Chair is now available in more wonderful patterns and materials than ever before… try a cluster of clashing or matching fabrics to make a cosy corner. A modern classic: the Egg Chair by Danish architect Arne Jacobsen available from Fritz Hansen will never go out of style.

Arne Jacobsen is the Danish architect who master the most personal and successful interpretation of the international functionalism. His architecture includes a considerable number of epochmaking buildings in both Denmark, Germany and Great Britain. Arne Jacobsen initially trained as a mason before studying architecture at the Royal Danish Academy of Arts, Copenhagen, graduating in 1927.

From 1927 until 1930, he worked in the architectural office of Paul Holsoe. In 1930, he established his own design office, which he headed until his death in 1971, and worked independently as an architect, interior, furniture, textile and ceramics designer. He was proffessor of Architecture at the Royal Academy of Arts, Copenhagen, from 1956 onwards. His best known projects are St. Catherine´s College, Oxford, and the SAS Hotel, Copenhagen.

Arne Jacobsen´s designs came into existence as brief sketches and were then modelled in plaster or cardboard in full size. He kept on working until his revolutionary ideas for new furniture had been realized at the utmost perfection. The “Ant” from 1952 became the starting point of his world fame as a furniture designer and became the first of a number of lightweight chairs with seat and back in one oiece of moulded wood.

Model “3107″ from 1955 is often merely called ” The Number Seven Chair”. It was launched in beech, black and white. The colour scale has through the years been further developed by a.o. the Danish architect Verner Panton and the Danish painter Poul Gernes 1925-96 and today includes a variety of colours in lacquer or lazure as well as beech, maple, ash, and cherry. “3107″ has become the most important success in Danish furniture history – manufactured in more than 5 million copies.

The Royal Hotel 1956-61, situated in Copenhagen, is one of Arne Jacobsen´s masterpieces. For the decoration of the hotel he designed several pieces of furniture, lamps and fabrics, and also cutlery, glasses, and door handles. As significant counterpoints to the stiffly upright, monumental building his easy chair, the “Swan” and the “Egg”, stand out as organic sculptures.

During the 1960´es Arne Jacobsen turned to forms as the circle, cylinder, triangle, and cubus. On the whole, his mind as an architect began to influence his design. Both the stainless steel tableware set “Cylinda-Line” and the lamp series “AJ” reflect this. Common to all Arne Jacobsen´s designs is that they have become international design classics.

“The Ant” and “The Number Seven” ´chairs made Arne Jacobsen world famous as a furniture designer and made Fritz Hansen an international manufacturer of design and quality furniture. Fritz Hansen´s collection of timeless furniture includes both well-known Danish classics and more recent furniture series designed by Danish and international designers.

Arne Jacobsen is one of the most well-known furniture designers of the 20th century. Known best for his Egg Chair, Swan Chair, and Series 7 Chairs, Jacobsen’s style helped to define an era. Perhaps his most well-known piece, the Jacobsen Egg Chair has become a hallmark of 20th century design. Our Jacobsen Egg Chair is an inspired reproduction of Jacobsen’s original, and offers impeccable accuracy to the original.

Jacobsen worked as both an architect and designer. Together with Fritz Hansen he produced the Ant and Series 7 Chairs in 1952, propelling both his and Hansen’s names into furniture history. In 1958, Arne Jacobsen introduced the Egg Chair, Swan Chair, and Swan Sofa to the world when he designed the lobby and reception areas of the Royal Hotel in Copenhagen. The Jacobsen Egg Chair earned instant notoriety and remains extremely popular today thanks to its unique look and chamber like seating area that blocks exterior noise.

The Jacobsen Egg Chair is available in a great variety of upholstery options, enabling you to choose which will best complement your home. Choose from several styles and colors of fabric, leather, and French vinyl. Pony-style cowhide is also available. You may also add an optional tilt mechanism.

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Egg Chair - a modern classic, 9.3 out of 10 based on 3 ratings
One Response leave one →
  1. Colleen permalink
    October 24, 2012

    Hi, I’m Executive Director of a core area day care in Winnipeg, MB. We have many children with special needs. We noticed your egg chair & feel that this would benefit them enormously.

    Could you tell me the cost for one egg chair?

    Thanks for your time
    Colleen

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    Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)

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