This means that in the future when students, staff and visitors to the School are having lunch or enjoying a cup of coffee in the canteen at the new school, they will be seated on J39 chairs, also known as The Peoples Chair (Folkestolen), at the tables that go along with these chairs: the same chairs many, many students have used over the years.
‘We have many fine, beautiful pieces of Danish design furniture. When we move, preserving as much as possible makes good sense,’ says Prorector Kristine Leth Juul. She continues: ‘Over the years we have invested in quality. This shows it was a sustainable choice: many generations of future architects will be able to use the furniture. The furniture also tells a story – about the design but also about the School. And this is something we want to incorporate in our new building, while also making new history.’
J39 and Børge Mogensen
The famous design classic J39, a wooden chair with a solid beech frame and a hand-woven seat of paper yarn, was created in 1947. The year Børge Mogensen decided to create a piece of furniture based on Danish carpentry skills and well-known furniture types; furniture that could be used by ‘the common man in ordinary situations’. With its versatile and uncomplicated form language, the chair is today one of the most sold chairs, and the chair has been in production since the design was launched.
When head of FDB’s design studio in the 1940s, Børge Mogensen was designing quality furniture for Danish homes at moderate prices. His wish was to create simple and practical furniture. And he never compromised when it came to long-term durability.
And it is this very insistence on durability that is evident today. More than 50 years after the School acquired the chairs and tables, they are still beautiful and functional – although after years of wear and tear they are now in need of tender loving care. The company Balderus, who is responsible for restoring the furniture, estimates that once restored the chairs will be able to last another 50 years.