Space Copenhagen & Fredericia – Perfect Collaboration
Thomas Graversen is today’s owner of the business. He explains: “Fredericia Furniture began as a Danish design house, born of a proud heritage.”
- Simple Principles
- Poetic Modernism
- Practice Makes Perfect
- Fredericia Furniture
- History & Tradition
It has been a heritage of unfaltering dedication. And it is dedicated to the perfection and progression of the design craft.
The business is proud of its collaborations with well-chosen international designers. What links Space Copenhagen and Fredericia is their shared renown for exceptional design integrity. What brings them together is Fredericia Furniture’s history and tradition of identifying and nurturing talent.
As Graversen explains: “Simple principles guide us.” And the company’s ambition is to create and deliver a collection of modern originals. The principles honour outstanding quality. This is through a careful selection of materials, functionality and attention to detail.
Space Copenhagen, was an obvious choice for a collaboration. The agency is well known for beautiful, crafted, relevant and intriguing pieces.
Signe Bindslev Henriksen and Peter Bundgaard Rützou established the business in 2005. Since then functional needs and human behaviour have shaped Space Copenhagen’s approach.
Space Copenhagen works across furniture, lighting and refined objects. Their art installations involve direction and interior design. The team designs for private homes, hotels and restaurants throughout the world.
Their ambition is to forge new paths. They do this by balancing opposites in their exploration of duality and contrast. This includes mixing sculptural and minimal. They also encompass classic and modern, industrial and organic, light and shade.
These include award-winning designs for cutting edge hotels. Among these are the 11 Howard Hotel in New York and The Stratford in London. The team also worked on restaurants like Geist, Geranium and the first Noma in Copenhagen.
As a practice, Space Copenhagen aims to fit between the disciplines of design. The pair create space from a structural aspect. They are also concerned with interiors. This involves considering how textures and objects work together. As Rützou explains: “We don’t do 40-storey high-rise buildings. We try to limit our practice to projects with relation to the human body.”
Practice Makes Perfect
Henriksen and Rützou believe Scandinavian design is influential and enduring. They also see it as timeless. Stripped down and natural it doesn’t need any bright colours and bold patterns to help it stand out.
They believe the honesty of Scandinavian design makes it more resilient. It is not affected by changing fashions. This gives it special longevity. Everything relies on the quality of materials and fine craftsmanship. Henriksen says: “A piece of our furniture may cost a bit more, but it’s going to last for 25 years. And it’s only going to look more beautiful the longer you keep it.”
Traditions of Scandinavian design are what influences Space Copenhagen’s products and interiors. A good example is the Spine range of chairs, stools and sofas. Space Copenhagen has used a classic design, popular in Scandinavia for many years. But the team strives to make it more modern.
The collaboration with Fredericia was obvious. ”See you in Fredericia!” became the catchphrase for the furniture industry. Fredericia, a small Danish industrial town, started to host an international furniture exhibition. This was the Nordic International Furniture Exhibition, aka ‘The Fair’. It was first held in 1910.
It was this that inspired entrepreneur N. P. Ravnsø. He chose the town in 1911 to establish Fredericia Stolefabrik Chair Factory.
Fredericia Furniture’s first standard collection appeared in 1924. Its catalogue exhorted customers to “pay attention to the upholstering. Only fine craftsmanship will provide the longevity you seek”.
It was a luxury collection. The basis was fashionable methodologies learned from historic Central European and English-style furniture. It emerged as furniture maker Kaare Klint was honing a new Danish School of design.
History & Tradition
It was the 1940s when Andreas Graversen first acquainted himself with the company. He was the father of today’s Fredericia Furniture’s CEO.
Back then the business was under the leadership of Børge Mogensen. And it coincided with the launch of a programme to renew Danish furniture. This tackled the culture. And the result was the creation of modern, functional and useful pieces. These were now affordable for all social classes.
Mogensen and his friend Hans J. Wegner designed several of these pieces. In 1945 Mogensen and Wegner presented at the Copenhagen Cabinetmaker’s Guild. The exhibition showed exclusive lightweight furniture design. It was a projection of what furniture would look like in Denmark in future.
When Mogensen died in 1978, he left behind 2,000 of his original designs. But today Fredericia is still pushing itself forward. It does this with new designs by up-and-coming young designers like Space Copenhagen.
Their contemporary pieces sit well with heritage pieces, as owner Graversen says. He believes that all good things should be able to have space in the same room.
This is a shared ambition with Space Copenhagen. The aim is to forge new paths by balancing opposites. The joint opinion of Space Copenhagen and Fredericia is that curiosity is fundamental.
Space Copenhagen’s intuitive approach embodies designs shaped by functional needs. And they also have a deep interest in human behaviour. The sense and belief are in a slow aesthetic centred on the longevity that comes with quality.
Space Copenhagen is always adding to its list of high-end interiors. Working with a leading manufacturer like Fredericia Furniture provides opportunities. Space Copenhagen is now home to a skilled, dynamic and diverse team. It comprises architects and designers.
They take on a wide range of designs and interior projects in key cities throughout the world. And together with Fredericia, the team is proud to draw on the experience of working in the field for many years. The two organisations collaborate to create lasting architectural, interior and design solutions.
What characterises the work is meticulous attention to the concept and details. The focus is always on refining ideas. And this is across disciplines so the results are as coherent as they are beautiful.