PP66 Chinese Chair
for PP Møbler
Designed in 1945, the PP Møbler Chinese Chair is the quintessential modern outcome of Wegner’s in-depth studies of traditional Chinese chairs from the Ming Dynasty. This chair became a cornerstone for Wegner, laying the foundations for many of his later designs with its scarce yet robust and functional geometry.
Despite being one of Wegner’s earliest designs in production, the pp66 Chinese Chair incorporates the most modern bending techniques. The chair’s elegance is achieved using a single piece of steamed solid wood, compressed along its length, using an advanced technical process. Immediately rounded and then bent in three dimensions, this complex bending technique represents a harmonious marriage of traditional inspiration and modern execution.
While bending wood may seem straightforward, the pp66 Chinese Chair’s complexity demands advanced tools, specialized knowledge, and experienced craftsmanship to control the operation. Wegner’s ability to seamlessly blend traditional design influences with contemporary production methods is exemplified in this iconic piece.
PP Main Catalog
Hans J. Wegner
If Danish modernism is best known and beloved for the use of traditional techniques to emphasize materiality—graceful curves honoring the grain of fine walnut, for example—that’s thanks in large part to Hans J. Wegner. Born in southern Denmark, at 14 Wegner began an apprenticeship with Danish master cabinetmaker H. F. Stahlberg, where he honed a preternatural talent and learned skills he’d bring to bear throughout a career lasting some eighty years and full of design masterpieces.
While studying at the School of Arts and Crafts in Copenhagen, Wegner worked for Arne Jacobsen and Erik Møller on a range of furniture for the Aarhus City Hall. Four years after graduation, he had showcased a chair at the Copenhagen Museum of Art and Industry, and opened his own firm. Sculptural, surprisingly comfortable seating became Wegner’s trademark: for Fritz Hansen, the floating Chinese chairs; for Carl Hansen & Sons, he designed the instant classic Wishbone, Shell, and Elbow chairs; for PP Møbler, the cozy Papa Bear, iconic Round, and buoyant Circle chairs; and countless others, most still in production.
Wegner retired in 1993 and died fourteen years later, but his work lives on in its ubiquity across residential, hospitality, and corporate design—not to mention the Museum Sønderjylland’s permanent exhibition of the three dozen chairs he felt were his very best in a water tour in his hometown of Tønder.