“Being able to look at a piece of furniture without questioning it makes it right.” – Joergen Kastholm
Joergen Kastholm continued designing high-quality, beautiful furniture and remaining active as an architect up until his death in June 2007. Joergen Kastholm was born in Denmark in 1931 and actually studied in the United States for a few years. He was an apprentice to a smith and continued his schooling in design at the School of Interior Design. When he graduated from school, he began to
work for Fritz Hansen before joining the architect’s office.
Joergen Kastholm had an eye for furniture creation and he always started his design by considering ergonomic and comfort. He felt that these two facets of a furniture piece were integral parts of the overall design. His eye never let him down and his furniture was always beautiful, comfortable, useful, and durable. Many of his designs won him international acclaim and numerous awards and honors.
Joergen Kastholm worked with other well known Danish designers and architects, such as Arne Jacobsen, before packing up his business and moving to Beirut. While there he was instrumental in the interior design of Scandinavian Airlines’ office building among other projects that he was involved in. Joergen Kastholm created furniture for 112 international airports, the former parliamentary building in Bonn, Germany, and the new parliamentary building in Berlin, Germany.
It was during his time in Beirut that he came upon the idea of creating steel furniture. Upon returning to Denmark, he took his idea and created the ‘Scimitar’. This chair celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2006 and was pronounced the Classic of the Year at the 2006 Scandinavian Furniture Fair. The chair has been out of production since 1984, but there have been recent talks about Gert Auhagen, the owner of bo-ex furniture aps, bringing it back into production after painstakingly restoring the chair’s original base.
In 1961 Joergen Kastholm meat Preben Fabricius and the two men became fast friends. They formed an architect’s office together and began collaborating on furniture and single-family homes. It’s this partnership that is probably the most well known in the furniture and design world, the creations these two men came up with together overshadowing many of their individual successes. Everything they created was elegant, functional, high-quality with attention to detail and very refined. Fabricius passed away in 1984, effectively ending the highly successful partnership.
In 1991, Joergen Kastholm formed a partnership with R. Randers, feeling that the company, who had worked in steel furniture before, was the perfect choice for his newest chair design, the 9000.
The company jumped on the chance to work with Kastholm and the chair is still in production today along with the MAXI chair, MAXI bench, and SAXO chair, all of which were Joergen Kastholm designs.
When he died in 2007, Kastholm was 76. His career included work with names such as Fritz Hansen, Arne Jacobsen, and Old Hagen. His work with Preben Fabricius, however, is the work that put Kastholm – and Fabricius – on the international furniture design map. Two true furniture designers.