Unique Auböck Wardrobe
From The Austrian Institute, C. 1955
A unique very large wardrobe designed and made by Carl Auböck III, circa 1955.
The double doored cabinet was made bespoke for the original interior of the Austrian Cultural Forum (previously, Austrian Institute), which opened in London in 1956. Specifically, the wardrobe was installed in a suite for guests staying at the institute at 28 Rutland Gate, Knightsbridge.
There are few designs for furniture in Werkstätte Auböck’s back catalogue, especially in comparison to the thousands of small objects designed since 1906. Resultantly, examples of furniture by Auböck are incredibly rare. However, the workshop does have a strong tradition of working with companies and institutions on special projects. Therefore, architect Carl Auböck III’s involvement in Austria’s creation of a base in London for encouraging international cultural & intellectual exchange and cooperation makes perfect sense!
The left-hand side of the unit is fitted with a hanging rail for clothes and a shoe rack. Both these elements incorporate thick poles in white metal. On the right-hand side are four shelves which are evenly spaced up from the floor of the wardrobe. Above the main double doors are two smaller double doors and behind each of these is undisturbed storage space.
The decorative details within the design are subtle. The most prominent feature is that the four chunky, solid wood, door handles are identical in size -despite the smaller cupboard doors being one-fifth the size of the main doors. The width of the handles is taken as the measurement for all the walls of the cabinet and the depth of the thick pelmet and skirting.
In excellent condition. The beech wood used throughout is a wonderful golden-honey colour.
Width: 178 cm
Height: 217 cm
Depth: 63.5 cm
Width of pole: 83.5 cm