A huge 200-year-old mansion in Copenhagen burned down eight years ago. Since then, a lot of work went into restoring the building to its former glory. House of Finn Juhl was asked to provide most of the furniture for the interior.
Dehn’s Mansion was built in 1756. The rococo building is located in the centre of Copenhagen with Amalienborg, the palace of her Majesty the Queen of Denmark, as its close neighbour. In 2010, a fire raged Dehn’s Mansion, destroying the roof and most of the interior. However, today, the place is completely restored and parts of it are refurnished with furniture from House of Finn Juhl.
House of Finn Juhl produces furniture from the late great Danish designer Finn Juhl and the company’s founders, Henrik Sørensen and Ivan Hansen, are honoured to have participated in the refurnishing of Dehn’s Mansion. Henrik Sørensen explains:
“The warm organic shapes of Finn Juhl’s design style fit right in with the mansion’s classic architecture. It is what sets Finn Juhl apart from other designers and architects of his era. He focused on creating furniture that were nature-like and shaped organically, which makes it fit easily with modern and old places alike”.
There is a strong connection between the furniture in Dehn’s Mansion and the rest of the chosen interior. As an example, the front desk is made of the same smoked oak as the chairs, and the chair’s fabric are the same shade of grey as the walls.
The pictures in this article were shot at the office of The Danish Industry Fond in Dehn’s Mansion. Here, Aarstiderne Architects designed the interior and Mette Gravergaard, creative manager at Aarstiderne Architects, tells that they chose the furniture based on what could stand the test of time:
“Finn Juhl is the perfect example of a designer who lives up to the functional demands of the present, while maintaining an unusually high standard in terms of design, aesthetics and quality. His furniture is famous for being extremely well-crafted, while patinating beautifully. Both are elements that go hand in hand with the textures, architecture and atmosphere that we have been striving to obtain at Dehn’s Mansion”.
Aarstiderne Architects created a room for innovation in the office space. Here, furniture can be moved around to adapt to different situations that may enhance creativity. This task demanded a versatile chair – the Reading Chair, as seen above. Designed to be equally comfortable to sit in when you face forward as when you face backwards, the chair was meant to be usable in numerous ways, according to Henrik Sørensen:
“Juhl believed chairs should be like beds. You must be able to sit in different positions and move around however you desire. The Reading Chair encourages you to sit in different positions and, so, it doesn’t hinder your movement, which may lead to a more creative mindset.
For the large meeting room in Dehn’s Mansion, Aarstiderne Architects chose to use The Council Chair. It is produced by Onecollection, which makes modern furniture and is Ivan Hansen’s and Henrik Sørensen’s other brand, next to House of Finn Juhl.
The chair comes from the famous UN Headquarters in New York, where there is a large council chamber designed by Finn Juhl, in 1951, as a gift from Denmark. When the building was renovated in 2011, the Danish Ministry of Culture held a design competition to find a new chair to be placed at the secretaries table in middle of the chamber.
The Council Chair by Kasper Salto and Thomas Sigsgaard won due to its elegant look and it ergonomically shaped body, which is designed to be comfortable to sit for hours on end. The chair, as seen above, is made of leather, 3D walnut veneer and polished aluminium.
In the CEO’s office, the style of the rest of building continues. Aarstiderne Architects generally went with a very subtle colour scheme throughout the building Henrik Sørensen says:
“In the CEO’s office, there are two Pelican Chairs by Finn Juhl. Now, normally people would buy these chairs in bright colours to make them stand completely out. But, what happened here was that Aarstiderne Architects went with grey, which, colour-wise, blends into the room’s large white windows and grey walls. Instead, it becomes just the shape of the organic-looking Pelican Chair that stands out from the stringent look of the rest of the room, and I think that is quite clever.”