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Jens Quistgaard

Jens Quistgaard
Jens Harald Quistgaard (1919 - 2008) was a Danish sculptor and designer. He was initially trained by his father, sculptor, Harald Erik Einar Quistgaard, subsequently serving an apprenticeship with Georg Jensen. Jens Quistgaard put Danish design on the world map, not least with his designs for the kitchen, including cutlery, pots and pans. Jens Quistgaard has been awarded many prestigious prizes including the Lunning Prize and several gold medals at the Milan Trienalle.

Jens Harald Quistgaard (April 23, 1919 – January 4, 2008) was a Danish sculptor and designer, known principally for his work for the American company Dansk Designs, where he was chief designer from 1954 and for the following three decades. Though a sculptor and grounded in traditional handicrafts, he quickly established a career as an industrial designer. From the mid 1950's his tableware and kitchenware designs became synonymous with Scandinavian modern and found their way into millions of homes in the USA, Europe and Japan. With his international orientation and success he was groundbreaking, and he had great significance for the place which Danish Design acquired in the minds of many Americans. In 1958 he received the Neiman Marcus Award and during the following years he was represented at major museums in Europe and the USA. Many of Jens Quistgaards works are still produced today.

In the beginning he made a living drawing portraits and making reliefs. He also produced jewellery, hunting knives, ceramic works, glass and graphic design in the form of monograms, town arms and the like. At the end of the 1940's his production also included cutlery in silver and steel for different companies, amongst others the silvery cutlery set Champagne (1947 for "O.V. Mogensen") and kitchen utensils in steel for "Raadvad", including the little shark fin can opener from 1950. His breakthrough as an industrial designer came in 1953-54, where he fashioned the cutlery set Fjord, the first cutlery set that combined stainless steel with handles of teak. Around the same time he designed a saucepan in cast iron for De Forenede Jernstoeberier A/S (United Iron Foundries). The pan was marketed under the name Anker-Line and was awarded the gold medal at the Triennale in Milan in 1954. In the same year, Quistgaard also received The Lunning Prize. 1954 was also the year American businessman Ted Nierenberg visited Europe, on the lookout for talented design which could be launched in the USA. After having seen the cutlery set Fjord at the Danish Museum of Art



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