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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Grete Jalk

I started this blog September 6, 2010. Some of you have been readers since the beginning. Others have come on board later. From now through the end of the month, I'm going to be on a short blogging break. Not only am I in the middle of a big volunteer project, I'm also trying to help get the new store open, so I've decided share some of my favorite posts from the past four years. I'll throw in a few new photos for you longtime supporters who read the posts when they were first published.

(First published 11/26.2010)

Danish-born Grete Jalk (1920-2006) studied first at the School of Arts and Crafts, Copenhagen. Later she studied under Kaare Klint at the Danish Technical College. After apprenticing as a cabinetmaker, she opened a studio of her own in 1954 and began showing her work at the annual exhibitions of the Copenhagen Guild of Cabinetmakers.

Jalk´s pieces are often described as sculptural. Of all her work, the famed Plywood chair (1963), manufactured by Poul Jeppensen, best embodies this quality. It differs from any previous experiments with molded plywood by virtue of its sheer technical daring; despite being composed of two pieces, the effect is seamless and elegant. She also designed a well-known tubular steel chair for Fritz Hansen in 1964.

Jalk´s work as a furniture scholar is likewise noteworthy. Her 1987 book, The Art of Danish Furniture is an important contribution to the topic.

In 1946, she won the prestigious prize of the Copenhagen Joiners' Guild, and in 1963 she was awarded the Daily Mail International Furniture Competition award. She exhibited at the 1951 Triennale di Milano, the 1968 "Two Centuries of Danish Design" exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and in 1968 at the Musee des Arts Decoratifs, Paris.

Along with her colleagues Finn Juhl and Hans Wegner, Jalk´s early work helped to propel Danish design to the cutting edge of international style.


Laminate chair




Coffee table

Pair of armchairs


Flip-top bar cart - TheModernHistoric


Adjustable stool

High back armchair

Lounge chairs


  1. Those are some fine photos. I'd love to have some of the items in my too-small house.

    Enjoy your break. I'll be watching for your return.

    Best wishes for success with your new store.

    1. Thanks for the kind words. We're getting closer and closer to opening. Won't be long now.

      That blue sofa is one of the ones that got away. If I could have made room for it when it was in the store, I would have bought it for myself. I loved that thing!