It was 1885 that the entire set No. 11 was presented: sofa, chair and armchair, characterized by having an oval piece -or three in the case of the sofa- meshed on the back. . The sofa has a small oval piece in the center framed by two crossed bars that make curved shapes that give the piece a modernist air.
While the first name that comes to mind when thinking of bentwood furniture might be Thonet (maker of the iconic Thonet No. 14 chair or “bistro chair”), Michael Thonet and his subsequent studio, the Gebrüder Thonet (Thonet Brothers), had a strong competitor in 19th-century Vienna: Jacob & Josef Kohn (also referred to as J. & J. Kohn).
Founded in 1849 by a father and son with the motto “Be one step ahead,” Jacob & Josef Kohn created modern furniture for indoors and out from Austrian beech. At the turn of the 20th century, after establishing itself with mastery of everything from chairs to coatracks and even doll furniture, J. & J. Kohn began working closely with the Wiener Werkstätte, the artisan cooperative cofounded by Austrian architect and designer Josef Hoffmann (Gustav Klimt and Koloman Moser were also members). Through this partnership, J. & J. Kohn produced an array of furniture in bentwood, cane and upholstery, which it sold through showrooms across Europe and North America. Its designs throughout the first decade of the 20th century reflect the Art Nouveau movement that was quickly gaining traction across Europe.
Price wars and mergers ensued during the first World War, and a company that Jacob & Josef Kohn had merged with became part of the world’s largest furniture manufacturer in 1923. The new conglomerate went on to produce examples of its bentwood furniture in keeping with the modern style of the Vienna Secession. While Thonet rebuilt, rebranded and expanded in the United States and elsewhere after World War II, J. & J. Kohn never produced furniture under that name again.
Height: 37.41 in. (95 cm)
Width: 19.69 in. (50 cm)
Depth: 27.56 in. (70 cm)
Seat Height: 18.51 in. (47 cm)
Price on request.