Estimated value: 70.000-90.000 US$
19-20th Century Design Art
Sales date: 2002-12-11
Lot number: 112
Hofmobelfabrik J.D. Heymann, Hamburg
This chair model was designed for the dining room of the Behrens' villa on the Darmstadt Mathildenhohe upon the occasion of the exhibition "Ein Dokument Deutscher Kunst," 1901. Like all of the rooms in Behren's house, the dining room was seen as a complete, aesthetic work of art that nevertheless simultaneously fulfilled its function.
The design of the entire dining room was subjected to an ornamental principle in which lines flow in and out of each other, as if they were beams of light. The entire furniture ensemble came into the possession of a doctor's family in Berlin in the 1950s. Two chairs and two armchairs from this group were sold at an auction in Munich in 1988, and today they are located in the Museum Kunstler-Kolonie, Darmstadt, and in the Wolfsonian Collection, Miami Beach, Florida. A bench, an armchair and a chair are currently in the collection of the Musee d'Orsay, Paris. Another chair was sold at auction in London in 1999. Period documents show that the ensemble was manufactured once more in 1901 at the request of Emilie Reif of Nurnberg. The question of whether the furniture that appeared in Berlin comes from the Behrens house or from the dining room of the Nurnberg household (presumed lost) has not yet been adequately answered. However, since Peter Behrens moved to Berlin in 1910 (where he died in 1940), and brought his furniture from Darmstadt with him, it is logical to assume that it would surface again in Berlin.
White-painted poplar wood, leather 41 3/8 in. (105 cm) high
Auctionhouse Ketterer, Munich
Ulrich Fiedler, Cologne
Dr. Gerhard Westermeier, Munich
Renate Ulmer, MUSEUM KUNSTLERKOLONIE DARMSTADT, pp. 6-7
Charlotte and Peter Fiell, 1000 CHAIRS, Cologne, 1997, pp. 90-91