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$ 10,450

“Paradise” Sofa by Kerstin Hörlin-Holmquist, Sweden 1958

Documentation Documented elsewhere (similar item)
Origin Sweden
Period 1950-1979
Materials Fabric, Wood
W. 73.03 in; H. 32.68 in; D. 31.5 in;
W. 185.5 cm; H. 83 cm; D. 80 cm;
Seat H. 16.54 in;
Seat H. 42 cm;
Condition Good. In good vintage condition. Wear consistent with age and use. The sofa has been reupholstered recently in premium bouclé fabric.
Creation Date 1958
Description Renowned for her curvaceous chair and sofa designs that utilize wood and the then pioneering use of polystyrene, Swedish modernist architect and furniture designer Kerstin Hörlin-Holmquist hails from a robust early-century generation of Scandinavian female furniture designers.

In the 1950s, Nordiska Kompaniet’s workshops in Nyköping, Hörlin-Holmquist was asked to take a larger role in the development of the Triva Collection and to provide the company a variety of furniture designs and interior fittings that expressed a modern Scandinavian ethos through soft lines and adaptive humanism. It was during this tenure that Hörlin-Holmquist designed her most iconic work—namely, her Paradiset Collection (Swedish for “Paradise” or “Eden”) from 1956-1958, which included this button-back (a Hörlin-Holmquist hallmark) Paradiset sofa. This stunning model features an immediately recognizable, organic shape that is very representative of the designer’s characteristic. It is a great example of how she managed to mix classic lines with modern design. The sofa has the typical rounded form with button tufting on the backrest, and an arched wooden base. The elegant curves and the overhanging back and armrest create an almost sculptural appearance, and unlike most models, the decorative buttons are arranged in two parallel lines following the curvature of the back. This creates a soft and stylish look that is further complemented by the tapered, solid beech legs, and the light bouclé upholstery.

Beyond jewellery, fashion, cosmetics, and Sweden’s first escalator, Nordiska Kompaniet offered its own line of custom-made furnishings crafted in workshops in Nyköping (est. 1904). The design aesthetic reflected the general ethos of the company: high quality production, pared-down lines with touches of genteel elegance, and, above all, an air of exclusivity.

In good vintage condition. Wear consistent with age and use. The sofa has been reupholstered recently in premium bouclé fabric.

73.03 in W x 31.49 in D x 32.67 in H; Seat height 16.53 in
185.5 cm W x 80 cm D x 83 cm H; Seat height 42 cm

About the Designer:
Kerstin Hörlin-Holmquist was born on May 30, 1925 in Arvika, Sweden. She was a Swedish modernist architect and designer. Hörlin-Holmquist graduated from Stockholm’s Konstfack in 1952, and before that she studied and worked in England.

She often worked with her husband Erik Holmquist, and together they modelled and created the pieces together. A key aspect for the couple was always to test their designs in their own home before completing a project.

"I think both furniture and textiles, wherever they end up, must be kind, gentle and courteous, but without losing their character. They should have human qualities, not be pompous and only stand alone, but be able to adapt to the environment they end up in..."

Hörlin-Holmquist worked and studied in England from 1946-1947 immediately after the war, where she also studied art history and became fascinated with the classic English upholstered furniture and style. Something that without a doubt inspired her own creations later in life while she still developed her own expression. She returned to Sweden where she attended Konstfack from 1948 and graduated from the school in 1952. She started working with Nordiska Kompaniet shortly after her graduation and became a lead designer. Her timeless and iconic ‘Paradiset Collection’ was created during her employment with Nordiska Kompaniet in 1956-1957 and holds a soft simplicity and a uniqueness in its appearance - light, clean lines and yet gracious with an air of romance.

Today, her designs are highly treasured collectibles. She is primarily remembered, for her ability to create designs for the modern home in the 1950s without worrying about short-lived trends and what other people thought - to stay true to her own unique and humanistic design vision. ~H.

This sofa will be packed and shipped with the greatest care to make sure you will receive the item in the gallery condition. Complimentary shipping within the Netherlands.
Styles / Movements Mid Century, Modern, Scandinavian Modern
Dealer Reference Number 20210538
Incollect Reference Number 469238
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