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Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Peter Hvidt and Orla Mølgaard-Nielsen

Peter Hvidt (1916-1986) and Orla Mølgaard-Nielsen (1907-1993) opened a furniture design office in 1944. Hvidt, who had trained as an architect and cabinetmaker at the School of Arts and Crafts in Copenhagen, designed very traditional furniture throughout the 1940s. His one success before they formed the partnership was his Portex chair, which was one of the first stacking chairs to come out of Denmark. However, in 1950, Hvidt and Mølgaard-Nielsen designed the AX chair, which became the iconic piece of their careers.  The AX was inspired by the work of Charles and Ray Eames and had a back of double curved laminated wood. It was produced by Fritz Hansen and came in several variations--with or without arms and either upholstered or with a wooden back and seat.

The AX chair is important in Danish design, because it opened up opportunities for mass-produced furniture, which ultimately made Denmark a leader in modern design. It also opened up export opportunities, because its back and seat could be removed for easy shipping.

The AX chair was accompanied by the AX table and was exhibited in the MoMA Good Design show in 1951.


Portex chairs

AX armchairs with leather upholstery

Minerva sofa

Corner table

Tambour door sideboard


Nesting tables

Cane side sofa

Side table with spindle magazine shelf

Light fixture for Le Klint


  1. ooooooh Dana!! the cane sided sofa has been on my wish list...(sigh)...:)

  2. @Sudha: Isn't that one beautiful? I love the curve of the arms.

  3. Finding a pair of Peter Hvidt's daybeds are on our wish list. Hopefully some day soon!

  4. @Gonked, Glooked and Slurped!: I love the Hvidt daybeds too. I included a photo of one in a recent post I did about daybeds. They're so sleek and simple...very classy.

  5. to whom it may concern, the leather armchair and sofa above are designed by Ib Kofoed Larsen and the model is called Elizabeth.