Bjorn & Bernadotte

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(B&B, established 1950)

This industrial design consultancy was founded in 1950 in Copenhagen by the Swedish silversmith and industrial and furniture designer Sigvard Bernadotte and the Danish architect Acton Bjorn and was the first of its kind in Denmark. Bernadotte had visited the United States in 1950 and was impressed by American industrial design practice, later writing a book entitled Industrial Design: Modern Industrial Formgiving (1953). Jacob Jensen was one of the company's first employees, joining in 1951 and heading the studio from 1954. By the end of the decade the company had eighteen employees, several of them from overseas, and was able to take on many commissions. Perhaps the most important of these were from Bang & Olufsen, a relationship that commenced in 1953 and included Bjorn's design of the Beolit 500 portable radio of 1964. B&B helped a number of other Scandinavian companies explore new materials, technologies, and aesthetic possibilities although their client list was international. Such an outlook was first embraced in the simple, functional forms of the Margrethe series of melamine bowls from 1950. Bernadotte became the president of ICSID in 1961 and founded his own design studio in Stockholm in 1964.

Subjects: Industrial and Commercial Art.

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