- Museum number
- Series: Cylinda-Line
Coffee pot, from the 'Cylinda-Line' series; stainless steel; cylindrical; with black, plastic handle and large close-fitting lid.
- Production date
- 1967 (designed)
Height: 20 centimetres
- Curator's comments
- See M. Collins, 'Towards Post-Modernism, Design since 1851', London, British Museum, revised ed. 1994, fig. 122. For further information and discussion of the genesis of Jacobsen's designs for Stelton, see Poul Erik Tøjner and Kjeld Vindum, 'Arne Jacobsen. Architect & Designer', Danish Design Centre, Copenhagen 1999, pp. 110-112, an interview with Peter Holmblad of Stelton. Holmblad was Jacobsen's foster son as well as his working partner. He recalled how the commission came about:
'I joined the company in 1963 and quickly realized that no actual design concept for what we call stainless receptacles existed. I tried to arouse Arne's interest in it, but he was extremely busy . . . So I did the only possible thing. I developed a design consisting of a bowl with a lid which I showed to Arne on different occasions, and asked for his comments; that way I engaged him. Of course he thought it to be untalented crap, and what was a merchant doing experimenting with design! . . . The cylinder was my idea, and Cylinda-Line, which was the outcome of it all, we thought could be created in six months, which was of course very naive. The process took three years and they were hard years. A constant interplay between techincal and production possibilities and Arne's ideas, which were scribbled down on a napkin over dinner . . . I had to keep in mind what was technically possible - since Arne knew nothing about the behaviour of stainless steel. . . . it quickly became apparent that the original plan of working in standard steel tubes would not work out, since it was too expensive to weld the bottom on. That only made it the silversmith type of work, which it was supposed to be distinguished from. So we had to cut out the form instead. The most time-consuming factor was the technical one.'
The series was acclaimed in the press and won the Danish Industrial Design Prize (the ID Prize) in 1967, the year it was launched. But it was not well-received in the hardware trade and sales took some time to pick up. Holmblad recalls having to get his mother and sister to order it and then he bought it back from them, while Jacobsen secured a large order for the pharmaceutical company, Novo, for whom Jacobsen had been the architect in 1958-9.
For other pieces from the Cylinda-Line series, see 2014,8024.415-419.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Britain, Europe and Prehistory
- Registration number