Kay Fisker (1893-1965) was a Danish architect and furniture designer, metalworker, and professionally active in Copenhagen. Fisker pointed out the importance of 20th-century Danish architecture to the Danish building tradition. “Sensible, considered style-conscious, modest – but highly cultured, is how a true Dane expresses himself.”
He studied at the Kunstakademiets Arkiekskole, Copenhagen until 1920.
He was the first of a new generation of architect-designers who produced historicist silver patterns with modern leanings. He designed silver for A. Michelson in Copenhagen in c1925 and furniture and book covers for others.
From 1936 to 1963 he was professor, Kunstakademiets Arkitekstole. Fisker taught at several schools of architecture abroad including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Harvard Graduate School of Design.
His famous Hornbaekhus (1922), constructed on the perimeter of a wide block around the courtyard, shows a “modern classicism” close to many new buildings. It has a pitched roof, regular partitioned windows with grey edges, and brick facades with a conspicuous grey groove.
A number of his later pieces the forms are divested of all superfluous embellishment as the silver jug. Danish silversmith A Michelsen employed Kay Fisker with Ib Lunding, and they produced Arne Jacobsen’s steel cutlery for the SAS Royal Hotel before Georg Jensen bought the company.
Awards | Recognition
In 1921 he received a gold medal in Ghent. His work was subject of exhibitions in Berlin-Charlottenburg in 1934 and 1953, Paris in 1939, London in 1950, and Århus in 1953.
His work was shown at the 1925 Paris ‘Exposition Internationale de Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes.’
Byars, M., & Riley, T. (2004). The design encyclopedia. Laurence King Publishing.
Englund, M., Schmidt, C., & Wood, A. (2017). Scandinavian modern. Ryland Peters & Small.
Hiort, E. (1954). Modern Danish silver. Museum Books.
Wickman, K. (1996). Scandinavian Design: The Dream is Still Alive. United States: Swedish Information Service.
Urban, F. (2017). The New Tenement: Residences in the Inner City Since 1970. United States: Taylor & Francis.
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