Nanna Ditzel

Nanna Ditzel - textiles and stairscape, 1966

Nanna Ditzel is considered the “first lady of Danish design,” which is one of those informative yet cringe-worthy labels that just highlights the whole problem of accidentally ghettoizing designers who happen to be women by the very act of celebrating the fact that they’re women designers. You can’t win. One doesn’t want to go on about their gender, but it’s impossible not to want to, because one wants to give these groundbreaking female designers as much recognition as possible – 20th C design was a world women had to fight hard to win recognition in. In Ditzel’s case, at least, her work was and remains moderately well-known, and over her long career she did win major international awards and acclaim and her work for Georg Jensen has brought her additional attention. She was an extremely versatile designer, working in furniture, textiles, accessories and jewelry. She created textiles for the Danish firm Unika-Vœv, and the “Stairscape” above was created in 1966 for their showroom, with her trademark split-level floor seating and low cushions. Her 1959 “Egg Hanging Chair” is now an iconic piece of modern design and doesn’t seem dated. We love her. And Eileen Gray. And Barbara Brown. And dozens of other female designers who deserve to be much better known than they are.

Nanna Ditzel, Egg Hanging Chair, 1959

Nanna Ditzel, Egg Hanging Chair, 1959

"Swirl" money clip by Nanna Ditzel for Georg Jensen

Nanna Ditzel Portrait, 1980s

Stainless steel “Swirl” money clip above is still available from Georg Jensen for US$40. More information on Ditzel here.

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