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Hoffmann Josef


Masterpieces Spring 2020


About the artist Brtnice 1870 – 1956 Vienna
Designed by Josef Hoffmann, Vienna, 1907/08
Executed by J. & J. Kohn, from 1908 on, model no. 371
Material Bent beech wood, stained, surface cleaned and slightly repolished, new upholstery covered with an original Jugendstil fabric, excellent original condition
Dimensions H 108 cm, SH 46 cm, W 44 cm, D 44 cm
Provenance private property, Germany
Literature J. & J. Kohn sales catalogue, 1909; Moderne Bauformen VII, 1908, p. 368; G. Renzi, Il mobile moderno, Gebrüder Thonet Vienna, Jacob & Josef Kohn, Milan, 2008, pp. 206 f.; Fremdkörper (ed.), Moderne Möbel, 150 Jahre Design, 2009, p. 658

J. & J. Kohn commissioned Josef Hoffmann to design a reasonably priced house including fixtures, fittings and furniture for the Vienna Kunstschau 1908. To furnish the house, Hoffmann used many of his already well-known pieces, including the "sitting machine" and the "Fledermaus" suite. The furniture placed on the veranda included a seven-ball bench. The seven-ball bench, armchair and chairs are amongst the most modern and pioneering designs Hoffmann ever developed for serial production by J. & J. Kohn. This design truly paved the way for modernism. As is often the case, however, the prophet had no honour in his own country and only few such chairs were sold. Not least because of their rarity, these pieces are thus among the most sought-after collector’s items of Josef Hoffmann’s entire oeuvre.

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SEVEN-BALL-CHAIR ⋅ Masterpieces Spring 2020 ⋅ Hoffmann Josef

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