Profile on Dutch Furniture Company Royal Ahrend and Designer Friso Kramer

Profile on Dutch Furniture Company Royal Ahrend and Designer Friso Kramer 1

It didn’t take long for me to step back in to my architectural ways, I feel like it’s been a bit heavy on the subject lately and that I haven’t given anything else a chance to soak through. To be honest, it could be down to a couple of books that came in to the shop last week relating to a few certain architects, I had a cheeky look and each one made me go on to discover more. As you know, I’m a very inquisitive individual.

So today seemed like a good time to flip the trend and go with some furniture, particularly a video of interest that I came across over the weekend on Dutch furniture company Royal Ahrend. It’s more of a ‘profile’ than a documentary, but you can learn a surprising amount from such a piece. Plus, they do also delve in to the life and work of Dutch designer Friso Kramer, most notably designing the famous Revolt chair in 1953. I’m positive you would have seen this specific chair as it’s super iconic, and came about thanks to Kramer experimenting with a series of molded plywood and steel chairs that were inspired by the work of the Eames for the company De Cirkel. Many aspects of the chair were regarded as extremely innovative for the time and became a popular icon of the Dutch design scene.

Sadly the chair slowly dwindled in numbers and was not being produced, so Ahrend reintroduced it in 2004 and it has been popular ever since, the demand is still high after all these years. Personally I think the functionality outweighs the aesthetic beauty of this chair, it just so happens that building an extremely stripped down piece of furniture for these reasons has led to something beautiful also. I love it when that happens, not necessarily intentional in form, but it had to be that way and no other way. That’s a true mark of a designer.

To conclude I invite you all to watch the short film below as an introduction to Ahrend as a furniture company. Although it features some funky titles and ‘interesting’ music, overall there’s some good design information on the functionality of the chairs they make and how us humans use them. We also get to see a little bit inside the workshop and how they produce them. Overall, a nice morning watch.