Description & Technical information


Designed by: Josef Hoffmann attr., Vienna, before 1906

Executed by: J. & J. Kohn, model no. 500/1


Beech and bent beech dyed to rosewood, brass fittings, desktop newly covered with navy blue Alcantara-like fabric, surface professionally repolished, excellent condition


H 74 cm, W 137 cm, D 77 cm


This desk is probably one of the highest quality pieces of furniture produced by J. & J. Kohn. The desktop’s frame was executed in bent beech. The "English" (semi-open front) drawers inside the desk also have bent frames with fitted bottom. The two doors are likewise made of bent wood.


The only reference to this extraordinary desk is to be found in a 1906 J. & J. Kohn sales catalogue, where it is listed as model no. 500/1. In addition, there is a picture included in the documentation of the 1911 Kohn brothers' exhibition in Buenos Aires. This picture shows exactly our model with three metal objects by Wiener Werkstätte on its top. The picture caption reads: "Top: hall. Bottom: reception room. Design and execution: Jakob and Josef Kohn, Vienna; from the Buenos Aires exhibition." However, the caption is not entirely accurate since the 'sitting machine' and 'barrel suite', which are also depicted, are verified Hoffmann designs.

Based on the formal language, I assume that the desk was also designed by Hoffmann. Its production was probably so expensive that only a limited number were made.

Date:  before 1906
Period:  Vienna, before 1906
Origin:  Austrian
Medium: Beech and bent beech dyed to rosewood
Dimensions: 74 x 137 x 77 cm (29¹/₈ x 53⁷/₈ x 30³/₈ inches)
Provenance: private property, Austria

Literature: Italian Sales Catalogue of the J. & J. Kohn company, 1906, p. 40, no. 500/1; Das Interieur, XII, 1911, illus. 31