Original Josef Hoffman Chairs

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wikicollecting

2015-06-26 10:43:01

Original Josef Hoffman Chairs are vintage chairs produced by the Austrian furniture designer Josef Hoffmann.

History & Description

Josef Hoffmann was an Austrian furniture designer and architect who helped to establish the Vienna Succession along with Gustav Klimt and Koloman Moser in 1897.

As his career developed, Hoffmann’s style became increasingly limited to functional structures and he restricted himself to abstract and sober shapes. While more-known for his architecture, Hoffmann also produced two of the most enduring and popular furniture designs of the twentieth century; the Kubus and Koller collection.

Hoffman was often nicknamed “Quadrati Hoffman” due to his passion for geometric forms and it is this mathematical clarity and functionality that characterised his furniture.

His designs were as practical as they were original and it was Hoffmann’s ability to produce furniture that was both comfortable and individual that elevated him as one of the pioneering furniture designers of the early-twentieth century.

Guide for collectors

Instances of Josef Hoffmann chairs are relatively common at auction but prices can vary significantly. As a general rule collectors can expect to pay between $5,000 and $15,000 for one of his chairs. However, it is not uncommon for Hoffmann chairs to sell for tens of thousands of dollars.

Perhaps the most collectible Hoffmann chair, although not necessarily the most valuable, is the “Sitzmaschine” dining chair, which was developed for the Weiner Werkstätte in 1905.

Notable auction sales

On June 11th 1999 at Christie’s in New York, a bentwood chair from the dining room of the Purkersdorf Santorium, designed by Josef Hoffmann, circa 1904, realised a price of $43,700.

On November 27th 1999 at Christie’s in New York, a “seven ball” bentwood side chair, Model No. 37, designed by Josef Hoffmann, circa 1906, realised a price of $32,300.

On September 27th 2007 at Christie’s in New York, a “Sitzmaschine” stained beech and bentwood adjustable chair, designed by Josef Hoffmann, circa 1908, realised a price of $27,400.

On June 13th 2008 at Christie’s in New York, a “Sitzmaschine” stained beech and bentwood adjustable chair, designed by Josef Hoffmann, circa 1908, realised a price of $23,750.

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