Carl Malmsten (1888–1972) devoted his life to the renewal of traditional Swedish craftsmanship, inspired by the cultural examples of the Swedish country manor and rustic styles – furniture endowed with a creative simplicity, with a feeling for the wood, with function in mind and a high technical quality.
Desk by Nya Guldheden
Malmsten’s light wooden furniture with their soft range of colours have in themselves become an allegory for that which is typically Swedish, with strong references to Swedish nature and cultural traditions. As a furniture maker he expressed the old, inherited forms and manufacturing skills as well as the new, bold ideas with his language of design. The result will forever be the same - beautiful, eternal individual pieces which together create a unified and harmonious feeling.
Round Samsas sofa by By Carl Malmsten
Malmsten's influence on Swedish furniture design is particularly significant through the schools he founded, including Carl Malmsten Furniture Studies in Stockholm and Capellagården on the island of Öland, east cost of Sweden, both of which are still in operation. It was Malmsten's wish to restore elements of the old master - apprentice institution that united professionalism with an education in craftsmanship. Carl Malmsten was an individualist who took a strong position against functionalism, which blossomed during the 30's. As an alternative he put forward a totally different program for a renewal of architecture and goods for everyday use. He fought for the right of humans to experience beauty in production.
Carl Malmsten PortraitCarpenters educated at Carl Malmsten Furniture Studies in Stockholm, guarantee on every single piece excellence of the craft, therefore manufacture is a central part of the program. The sign ”CM” proves the origin of the furniture. Every piece is functional, each representing a unique work of art. With masterly quality down to the smallest detail, the pieces represent treasures of future manufacturing. They still make an excellent investment today.
Kitchen chair Lilla Åland 1942 – still in production today
In the 50's Carl Malmsten introduced a cooperative project, ”Nyckelverkstäderna” ( Key Workshops), connecting up a number of highly qualified workshops. The project was intended to draw on the experience of industrial furniture manufacturing techniques without lowering the standards of artisanship and quality. The remaining workshops are the ones who still today manufacture the standard range of Malmsten furniture.