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VERNER PANTON

Verner Panton has been called the most un-Danish of famous Danish designers. His 1960 breakthrough, the injection-molded, plastic S Chair, vividly summed up his experimental nature, propensity for bold color and relish for new materials. Then regarded as the bad boy of post-war Scandinavian design, he had originally studied architecture at the Royal Art Academy in Copenhagen, graduating in 1951. After a 2-year stint in the offices of fellow Dane Arne Jacobsen, he struck out on his own and his early architectural proposals using unlikely elements such as cardboard and plastics attracted wide notice.

One of the iconic designers of the 20th century, Verner’s work was animated with a sense of fun and remains popular and influential today. "Most people spend their lives living in dreary, grey-beige conformity, mortally afraid of using colors,” said the designer, who died in 1998. “I try to show new ways, to encourage people to use their imagination and make their surroundings more exciting.”