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May 08, 2014

Happy Birthday, Jens Risom!

Jens Risom with his iconic lounge chair designed in 1943.

We celebrate Jens Risom every day at DWR -- and especially today, his 98th birthday. Risom designed the first chair for the company Knoll in 1941, and he's still designing today. In fact, we'll be launching his latest collection in early 2015.


"Basically, my whole life has been in the design of pieces that make the living environment more enjoyable," says Risom. "Many designers lose sight of this. They want their work to be looked at like art. I prefer design that is neutral and not the center stage, furniture that is for people."

To the man who has brought us so much enjoyment in our living environments, we wish you a very happy birthday!

DWR PRESENTS: JENS RISOM from Design Within Reach on Vimeo.

Learn more about Jens Risom in this DWR Film.


I bought a mid-century Jens Risom couch at a thrift store about 10 years ago. It was in mint condition and I only paid $75. Never knew what a gem I had until I was at an antique store a couple weeks ago and the owner was telling me about the Risom executive desk she has in her shop when I inquired about any mid-century modern furniture she might have. As soon as I saw it, I though, "Hmmm... where have I seen legs like that before?" I thought that maybe one of my friends had a Risom piece with those distinctive legs. Then I got home and happened to look down at my couch legs. I said, "Oh!... that's why they look familiar! They are the same style as my couch legs." So proceeded to look under my couch, and sure enough... the label attached reads "Jens Risom" I wish I knew the date the couch was made, but I am sure I could easily find out. I also wish I had bought the complementary couch that came with mine... the same one, but a longer version. Both were in mint condition. Glad to know I have a Risom design. And how appropriate that I find out just days before his birthday!!

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