Danish design celebrated in the Philippines

Arne Jacobsen’s iconic Series 7 chair was honored in the Philippines last week, when Studio Dimensione celebrated the Series 7’s 60th anniversary. Republic of Fritz Hansen, the company behind, reports of a successful event and moreover an increasingly successful market in the Asia-Pacific region.

Republic of Fritz Hansen had picked seven profiled architects to do variations over the lightly shaped heavyweight designer chair. The chair was rethought and presented in creative ways from clad in full-grain calf leather to stamped into a block of concrete.

The tribute is ending a string of events that has taken place all over the Asia-Pacific region since the marking of the 60th anniversary started in 2015. Overall the events have been related across countries in the region but local efforts have been behind the single events, Mayuko Aizawa, Sales and Brands Coordinator at Republic of Fritz Hansen in Asia-Pacific, explains and elaborates:

“The series of events during this anniversary have been hugely successful. Each department have been able to invite top designers and architects in their local regions and the media exposure has been remarkable in all countries”.

The Series 7 is often the first collector’s item when engaging in Danish Design and it might be the most popular chair in the history of Danish design. Dario Reicherl, the firm’s vice president for Asia-Pacific and Middle East, claims that nearly 10 million copies of the Series 7 have been produced.

Lots of these copies seems to enter Asian homes. Mayuko Aizawa reports of rapidly growing sales in the region, telling that the company’s growth doubled in 2015 since 2013. Moreover they have started to open single Republic of Fritz Hansen stores in Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand and latest in the Philippines in January 2015.

“These so-called mono stores are trending. It shows our brand very well and strengthens it the market in each country, they have a stronger feeling that the brand is in their country, than if we were only selling in other department stores”, she says.

Selling sleek and simple Danish design in a region where ornaments and spears defines the architectural tradition is not naturally paired business. According to Dario Reicherl, Fritz Hansen vice president in Asia-Pacific and Middle East, the Asian market doesn’t like the chair right a way:

“This is how it usually starts,” he said. “You’re not instantly into Scandinavian design because it’s not in-your-face. It’s like a beautiful woman that you marry: It’s not instant ‘wow!’ She’s pretty, but you hear her talk and she’s very intelligent, very smart, very funny”, he told Inquirer, Philippine Newspaper.

The Arne Jacobsen Series 7 Chairs was introduced in 1960 (Photo: Republic of Fritz Hansen)
The Arne Jacobsen Series 7 Chairs was introduced in 1960 (Photo: Republic of Fritz Hansen)

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