V11 LOUNGE CHAIR & OTTOMAN
BY ILLUM WIKKELSØ
AN UNSURPASSED CLASSIC BY A MASTER OF DANISH DESIGN
A DARLING WITH GLOBAL APPEAL
Originally designed in 1965 for the furniture maker Holger Christiansen, the V11 went on to become one of Wikkelsø’s most wildly successful designs, generating demand all over the world. It has been featured everywhere from the office of the president of Japan to the palace of the king of Saudi Arabia, and has sustained an unwavering appeal among collectors and design aficionados in every decade since its launch.
Returned to production by GUBI, the V11 Lounge Chair and Ottoman serves as at-a-glance testimony to Wikkelsø’s forward-thinking, quintessentially modern style as a designer, but it is not until the moment one sits in it that his exceptional craft and dedication to physical comfort and flexibility become immediately, irresistibly clear.
BUILT TO LAST
The V11’s success is largely down to its fine craftsmanship and distinctive design. The tall trapezoidal body of the chair stands on four tapering solid wooden legs, each in an inverted pyramid shape that echoes the angular contours of the arms and backrest. This gives the V11 a sharply defined and unmistakably modernist silhouette, while maintaining the look of a classic lounge chair. This iconic aesthetic is matched in the accompanying ottoman, which, used in combination with the lounge chair, opens up the variety of positions available to the sitter still further, while being a comfortable perch in its own right.
PIPED TO PERFECTION
To ensure Wikkelsø’s original design is precisely recreated, GUBI worked in close collaboration with the designer’s family, employing a 3D scanning process on original examples of the design in order to perfectly capture the V11's original aesthetic and construction. A gifted cabinetmaker, Wikkelsø typically created furniture that involved a high degree of complexity in its construction, and the V11 is no exception. Each component of the chair has to be crafted by hand, and, because of the unusual shape of the chair body, the upholstery closure has to be positioned visibly at the top rather than concealed at the bottom. To give the chair a seamless piped edge therefore requires the highest upholstery skills, as any imperfection would be clearly exposed.
The reintroduced editions of both the lounge chair and the ottoman are FSC®-certified (FSC®-C176589) and comprise a wooden frame, with legs in either solid walnut or oak, and numerous upholstery options available. On the Lounge Chair, s-spring suspension beneath the seat and four removable, feather-filled cushions ensure comfort on all sides – this is a chair one can sink into and stay in for hours. The V11 Ottoman features a single cushion that can be easily removed for cleaning.
Danish furniture designer Illum Wikkelsø (1919–1999) belonged to a group of designers who represented the Golden Age of Danish design during the 1950s and 1960s. With his clear design aesthetic and deep understanding of materials, he was one of the key protagonists to make Danish design an international phenomenon. Wikkelsø believed that there was no one way to sit in a chair, and that any successful chair design should therefore allow for multiple sitting positions. With its high back, deep seat, low-slung arms, and all-around cushioning the V11 Lounge Chair exemplifies this approach.
V11 LOUNGE CHAIR AND OTTOMAN