Offered by: H. Gallery
Concordiastraat 68 - 127 Utrecht 3551EM , Netherlands Call Seller 0031302270051


Josef Frank "The Knot of Friendship" Brass Candelabra, Sweden 1940s

$ 1,425
  • Description
    Josef Frank designed Vänskapsknuten (the Knot of Friendship) as a symbol of friendship and peace at a time when Europe was filled with turmoil. The very first sketch of the candelabra dates back to 1938, just a year before the outbreak of the Second World War, but it is as relevant now as it was then.

    The Austrian designer and architect may be best known for his vivid textiles for Swedish firm Svenskt Tenn, but his artistic touch reached far beyond textiles and created iconic objects such as this candle holder. The elaborate brass structure intertwines at multiple points, but the brass rods only meet in the middle where a small sphere connects them. Each of the three brass cup have so-called chambersticks, small pans to catch dripping wax. The looping calligraphic design gives this piece a weightless grace that is stunning even without the symbolism behind it. The body’s busy look is completed and balanced by the long candles. The design changes from angle to angle and shows Frank’s sensitive touch. The Knot of Friendship has become an iconic object not only in Svenskt Tenn’s range, but also of Sweden. The production traditionally required a process of thorough methodology and great craftsmanship. Josef Frank was the most prestigious designer in the Stockholm design company Svenskt Tenn (Swedish Pewter), recruited by the founder of the company, Estrid Ericson herself.

    Since 2018, after a careful assessment of Josef Frank’s original drawing, the candelabra regained its original form from 1938 under the hands of Svenskt Tenn. However, the production of this well-known and widely-loved candle holder now takes place at Humstorp Metal in Västergötland. This piece however, is from the original production from the post-war era.

    In good vintage condition. Wear consistent with age and use. The brass has a beautiful patina with some marks.

    9.05 in W x 8.26 in H x 5.7 in H
    23 cm W x 21 cm D x 14.5 cm H

    About the designer:
    Josef Frank (July 15, 1885 – January 8, 1967) was an Austrian-born architect, artist, and designer who adopted Swedish citizenship in the latter half of his life. Together with Oskar Strnad, he created the Vienna School of Architecture, and its concept of Modern houses, housing, and interiors.

    Josef Frank was one of early Vienna modernism’s foremost figures, but already in the beginning of the 1920s he started to question modernism’s growing pragmatism. He had little appreciation for the French architect Le Corbusier’s belief that a house should be “a machine for living in”. He was against puritanical principles and on the contrary, feared that standardized interiors would make people all too uniform. Josef Frank represented a freer, more artistic style ideal, and he developed his own type of modernism where values like comfort, hominess, and a wealth of colour were at its core. He resisted limitations and models for his furniture and textiles came from across all boundaries both in time and space.

    Josef Frank began working at Svenskt Tenn in 1934 and just a few years later, the Frank-Ericson duo made their international breakthrough. Svenskt Tenn’s exhibition room at the World Expositions in Paris in 1937 and New York in 1939 was completely contrary to the ideal of the time with its bold contrasts in materials, colours, and prints. The duo received a great deal of attention and became, somewhat paradoxically, the model for the expression “Swedish Modern”. Although he was already 50 years old when he left Vienna for Sweden, Frank is considered one of Sweden’s most important designers.
  • More Information
    Documentation: Documented elsewhere (similar item)
    Origin: Sweden
    Period: 1920-1949
    Materials: Brass
    Condition: Good. In good vintage condition. Wear consistent with age and use. The brass has a beautiful patina with some marks.
    Creation Date: 1940s
    Styles / Movements: Modern, Mid Century, Scandinavian Modern
    Dealer Reference #: 20221430
    Incollect Reference #: 615153
  • Dimensions
    W. 9.06 in; H. 5.71 in; D. 8.27 in;
    W. 23 cm; H. 14.5 cm; D. 21 cm;
Message from Seller:

Located in Utrecht, The Netherlands, H. Gallery specializes in modern and contemporary design with a strong focus on Brazil and Scandinavia. The gallery strives to preserve and promote especially Brazil's rich design heritage and curates a select group of contemporary artists. Meticulous research, ie getting in contact with the original designers, producers, their heirs, and retrieving and indexing old catalogues and magazines is at the heart of its activities. All works presented excel in great

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