Iconic Arne Jacobsen dining chairs get a new colour palette

Fritz Hansen enlists Italian curator Carla Sozzani to devise a new chromatic palette for Arne Jacobsen's iconic dining chairs

Arne Jacobsen chairs by Fritz Hansen with colour palette created with Carla Sozzani
Part of the 'A Sense of Colour' collection are the Series 7 chairs by Arne Jacobsen, shown here in a colour palette developed with curator and gallerist Carla Sozzani
(Image credit: TBC)

Danish company Fritz Hansen has joined forces with design curator and gallerist Carla Sozzani to present ‘A Sense of Colour’, a collection featuring iconic Arne Jacobsen chairs in a novel colour palette.

The plywood designs, originally conceived by Jacobsen between 1952 and 1957 and still successfully in production to this day, feature nimble silhouettes and a stackable structure. Their sinuous lines are a recurring element in all of Jacobsen’s production, from the embracing Egg chair to the slim lines of his dining chairs. Fritz Hansen has been producing the Danish design master’s work and preserving his legacy, also mixing it with new contemporary influences that keep the design memory alive. 

Carla Sozzani worked closely with Fritz Hansen’s head of design Christian Andresen to select a warm palette of 16 new shades. The early steps of the collaboration included some colour workshops at Sozzani’s Paris studio, narrowing down the palette. ‘One of the primary goals were to create a collection united by a warm tone, a red thread so to speak,’ explains Andersen. ‘This was achieved by every colour having a splash of red.’

Carla Sozzani photographed at her Paris studio

Carla Sozzani photographed at her Paris studio alongside Arne Jacobsen's Series 7 chairs in the colours she developed for the 'A Sense of Colour' project in collaboration with Fritz Hansen

(Image credit: TBC)

The ‘A Sense of Colour’ collection includes deep red, blue and green shades punctuated by yellow, orange and pastels as well as neutral touches of clay and beige. ‘From the dark green and blue of shifting waves and sky, to the pinks and ochres of small shells and a fading seashore in twilight, the palette came naturally as I explored the essence of daylight and its partner: night, to capture the essence of our shared colour harmonies,’ Sozzani explains poetically. Her approach to colour is closely linked to light and darkness, and the resulting chromatic composition she curated is played on the tension between the two. 

‘I imagined what Mr. Jacobsen might have thought when he made his first palette [for the Series 7 chair] in 1955. Perhaps, as the North and South Poles are always in relationship, he also explored this relation between the light and the darkness,’ ponders Sozzani. ‘Because both Italy and Denmark are bound by our relationship to the sea, the colours and influences of the objects of the sea – shells and seaweeds; small sea creatures, and the sands along the beaches – offered naturally a spectrum of colour possibilities to explore.’

Arne Jacobsen chairs in grey, green, yellow and beige

(Image credit: TBC)

Arne Jacobsen chairs in a variety of different colours

(Image credit: TBC)

Arne Jacobsen chairs in various colours stacked in piles

(Image credit: TBC)

Arne Jacobsen chairs in different colours set up in a 4 x 4 square

(Image credit: TBC)

A stack of multi-coloured Arne Jacobsen chairs

(Image credit: TBC)



Rosa Bertoli was born in Udine, Italy, and now lives in London. Since 2014, she has been the Design Editor of Wallpaper*, where she oversees design content for the print and online editions, as well as special editorial projects. Through her role at Wallpaper*, she has written extensively about all areas of design. Rosa has been speaker and moderator for various design talks and conferences including London Craft Week, Maison & Objet, The Italian Cultural Institute (London), Clippings, Zaha Hadid Design, Kartell and Frieze Art Fair. Rosa has been on judging panels for the Chart Architecture Award, the Dutch Design Awards and the DesignGuild Marks. She has written for numerous English and Italian language publications, and worked as a content and communication consultant for fashion and design brands.