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The home of Leonard and Anna-Lisa Brahme

– An early Josef Frank interior in Sweden

Lots to be sold at our Important Sale: Modern & Contemporary Art + Design 10 – 12 May 2023

In Elsa Grandin’s article entitled ”Högmodernt hem från 20-talet” (State-of-the-art home from the 20s) in the 1948 edition of Svenska hem i ord och bilder, you can read about the home of chief physician Leonard and Anna-Lisa Brahme’s home on Drottninggatan in Norrköping:

State-of-the-art decor, tastefully interspersed with antique furniture and objets d’art – that’s the immediate impression you get of the beautiful home of Dr. and Mrs. Leonard Brahme. In fact, the still unchanged foundation of this home is just over a quarter of a century old. This fact is astonishing, but the explanation is not far off. A sister of Mrs. Brahme’s mother is married to Professor Josef Frank. And the young doctor couple was so brave that they dared to follow the new bold signals, which their later so famous relative had just raised in the field of home interiors, when they settled down. It took place in Lund in 1923, that is, well before the breakthrough of functionalism in Sweden. The furniture was commissioned during the couple’s engagement period and was executed according to the professor’s drawings in his workshops in the Wiener Kunstgewerbeschule.

The furniture set now on offer is thus something out of the ordinary. They were commissioned and made years before Frank made a big name for himself in Sweden when he was introduced to Estrid Ericson and Firma Svenskt Tenn in the early 1930s. The present pieces were designed as early as 1922 and executed between 1923-24 during Frank’s tenure as a teacher at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Vienna. Anna-Lisa’s aunt Anna Sebenius had married Josef Frank in Vienna in 1912, and that way this rather unique order from Sweden was placed already in the first years of the 1920s. In a letter from Josef Frank to Anna-Lisa Brahme dated July 8 1922, large parts of the order are mentioned. Regarding the table and chairs, Grandin continues in her article in Svenska hem i ord och bilder:

In the dining room, practically the entire furniture set comes from the first home. The wood types are walnut, mahogany and cherry wood with a fine prominent grain. The large table with its rounded corners has an intarsia star in the middle. The chairs are covered with a most unusual fabric. It is made of real horsehair – hand-woven according to the professor’s instructions – and apparently indestructible.

Uppsala Auktionskammare has the great honor of presenting a furniture set from one of the first private interiors in Sweden carried out by Josef Frank.

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Knut Knutson


Tel: 0708-12 12 27

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