It all began with an egg carton. The year was 1967, and Poul Christiansen was just 19 years old, when he applied to the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts – School of Architecture. One of the assignments in the entrance examination was to design a new egg carton. The shape of the egg inspired him to fold a sheet of paper along beautiful curves: ellipses, parabolas and sine curves. The folds gave rise to soft, organic, spatial forms. Forms that might hold and protect an egg.
Although his folded objects for the entrance exam never resulted in innovative egg packaging, they did mark the beginning of a lifelong collaboration with the lighting firm LE KLINT and a pioneering pleating technique that over more than five decades has turned out many, many new LE KLINT lamps.
That was how Poul Christiansen and LE KLINT’s partnership began, more than 50 years ago. To mark the 50th anniversary of one of LE KLINT’s most popular lamps ever, Model 172, designed by Poul Christiansen and launched in 1971, we – Poul Christiansen, LE KLINT and A. Petersen – have created the anniversary exhibition.
The exhibition presents playful pleating, sculptural sketches and finished lamp models created by pleating along curved lines in paper or lampshade foil. The architectural and artistic trials and experiments that form the basis of Poul’s long-standing design practice come together here in a celebration of paper pleating, lighting design and long-standing collaboration. The collaboration featured here revolves around Danish design, made in Denmark and based on solid craft traditions in a contemporary context, where curious renewal goes hand in hand with an open, storytelling production process.
Work in the upholstery workshop by upholsterer Jon Svarth ranges from the development of prototypes and the production of new pieces of furniture to the renovation of old furniture. Just as there is new furniture to develop, it is also meaningful to repair and reuse with respect for materials and resources.
When the cabinetmakers Kim Berchon Nielsen and Gustav Sandegård are busy in the workshop, you are welcome to have a look and see them at work. It is important to be able to get up close in order to really understand the many procedures which all items of furniture must go through before they are finished and ready for use. In the assembly workshop, a Knud Holscher cabinet in acrylic gets the final touch and finish.
In the machine workshop, timber is cut and made ready for new furniture models. All the templates for the many elements that make up the base frame of the Dan Svarth sofa hang on the wall.