From top: Lewis Morley’s image of Christine Keeler (1963); Jacobsen himself; chairs in the Bellevue Theatre (1935); the SAS Royal Hotel lobby in the 19605; candle sticks (1958); AJ cutlery (1957); and an advertisment from the 19605
In 1903 when the photographer Lewis Morley was asked to take some publicity shots of the actor ('ht'istine chlct' for a now long-forgotten film project. the producers wanted her nude and Keeler wanted to keep her modesty intact. .\1orley cleared the studio and struck upon a compromise. He found a chair whose back and seat was a single piece of plywood. ll was an accttratc rip—off of one of .lacobsen’s Series 7 chairs (number .‘~|()7 to be exact). .\lorley°s last shot had something special to it. The dark Veneer of the chairs back matched the colour of Keeler‘s hair. yet struck a balance with her pale limbs appearing from aboye and beneath it. The curyes of the chair looked industrial yet also mimicked the shape of the model's shoulders.
.\lonths later. news that (‘hristine Keeler was haying an affair with the cabinet minister John Profumo hit the headlines and the picture became an icon. Since then eyen Homer Simpson has been pictured astride a Jacobsen.
Jacobsen always tried to exist outside fashion. once declaring: ‘I can’t stand the term good taste. It is as if we were talking abottt ladies' hatsf He died in l‘)7l and. despite the fact that his cutlery designs were Used in Kubrick’s 200/: A Space ()(lytssr'y. the popularity of his designs diminished oyer the next two decades. The Royal Hotel in (‘openhagen was completer gutted of his integral furniture and interior design.
Yet he has transcended fashion. Last year the Royal reintroduced his designs in different colours throughout the hotel. It eyen gaye oyer one room mom a completely authentic restoration. down to the polymers in the carpet. The general manager of the Royal. :\ilceslt (‘arew explains: ‘\\'e wanted to recreate some of what had been lost and create a Scandinayian feel for the hotel which was also aliye and modern. It would hayc been crazy to Use anyone else‘s designs.'
In a speech opening a smaller centenary Jacobsen exhibition this year Peter Wilson. editor of the Scottish Architecture maga/inc .-ll<‘('.'l explained the difference between .lacobsen’s products and those created in the 'different design ethos’ of ‘major manufacturing countries like (iermanyf ‘\\'hen we look at Danish products they are somehow personal and distinctiye. stemming
from the tradition of the natiye tradition of
arts and crafts with a strong sense of their ow n materiality the materials are Used in a way that is somehow more humane. more natural.’
This response to a major indtistrial neighbour makes .lacobsen‘s style an interesting model for Scottish designers. .lacobsen‘s designs look simultaneously Danish and international. llis chairs will always be sat in.
Evergreens and Nevergreens is at the Lighthouse, Glasgow, Sat 7 Sep—Sun 3 Nov.
16 THE LIST; "Tw:
THE X-FACT OR
Running in tandem with Arne Jacobsen‘s Evergreens and Nevergreens is an exhibition highlighting the best of Scandinavian design. And no, they don‘t mean Ikea. Young Nordic Design — The Generation X brings together the work of 40 young designers from Denmark, Iceland. Norway. Sweden and Finland and some of their work will be on sale in the Lighthouse shop.
Trousers and blouse, sweater and top by Iceland’s Bergpora Guonadéttir.
Bagman (plastic bag holder) by Norway’s Sigbjorn Windingstad.
Block Lamp (Design House
Stockholm) by Finland’s Harri Koskinen.
Lifejacket (prototype in cooperation with Peak Performance) by Sweden’s Peter Ejvinsson.
Young Nordic Design - The Generation X, the Lighthouse, Glasgow, Sat 14 Sep—Sun 20 Oct.