Ash & Cane PK15
A PK15 armchair in ash designed by Paul Kjærholm in 1979 and made by PP Møbler in the 1990s.
The sinuous frame is obtained using precompression, an evolution of the older technique of steam bending. The PK15 was the first precompressed chair to go into commercial production.
On first inspection the chair seems quotidian/everyday. However, on closer inspection it becomes apparent that a lot more is at play. Remarkably, the chair is composed of just four elements; the front legs come armrests come backrest, the back legs come backrest, a seat and a brace.
Material wise the chair is similarly simple, being just solid ash, cane and steel fixings.
Unlike many of his contemporaries in Denmark Kjærholm’s method of design was more in line with the rigorous purist approach of the Bauhaus. Although, his rational designs such the PK22 or this PK15 chair manage to avoid the cold and hard-edged aesthetic common in the work of the Bauhaus. Kjærholm achieved this thanks to the uncompromisingly high level of consideration given to every detail of designs’ -in the design studio as well as at the factory.
The thought that was put into for example the leather of the PK22 model: specificities regarding how it should be used and how it should be textured, tanned, coloured and treated meant Kjærholm’s designs retain a sense of traditional craftspersonship even though they utilised modern industrial materials and were mainly produced by machine.
Whilst discussing his design method, Kjærholm said "The most important thing is to express the personality of the material - not your own".
In the flesh, the personality of the materials in Kjærholms designs are very evident through their balance, weight, texture, smell, and how they age and wear.
The chair has been lovingly used but remains in overall good condition.
Specifications:Width: 56 cm
Height: 70 cm
Depth : 44 cm
Seat Height: 46 cm
Materials: ash, cane, steel
Date of Design: 1979
Date Of Manufacture: 1990s
Place of Origin: Denmark
Designer: Paul Kjærholm
Workshop: PP Møbler