Master of Swedish Modernism: Josef Frank

After hearing my mom rave about a new exhibit at the American Swedish Institute (ASI), I decided that I had to run down there and check it out.  The ASI, by the way, is located in the stunning 1900s Turnblad Mansion on Park Avenue in Minneapolis – but more on that in a future post.

This exhibit was a show case of the late Swedish designer Josef Frank’s work.  Walking through the pieces on display, I could see:

1) the Swedish modern design that Ikea has made famous the world over

2) the Swedish design aesthetic that dictates extremely simple design in furniture combined with vibrant fabrics on chairs, couches, rugs and window treatments

Take a look:


A vibrant fabric on top, and a (truly) cruelty-free animal rug beneath.

Look familiar? You can see where Ikea finds its inspiration.

My FAVORITE fabric of the show!  (Sorry about the plastic stand in the photo.)

A stylish chair at its most refined.



A basic chair design jazzed up with sassy fabric.

I love this cabinet – the handles remind me of Central Asian jewelry!

And perhaps the wildest piece of all – check out this sofa!

Happily, you can buy many of the textiles, as well as fabulous furniture pieces at Just Scandanavian.

Happy Monday!

À bientôt,


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  1. Debbie on August 31, 2014 at 4:52 am

    I really want that sunflower chair any idea how I can get it?

    • Katherine on November 13, 2014 at 3:25 pm

      Hi Debbie,

      Check out Svenskt Tenn. If you don’t see it online, you can try calling them. If they aren’t selling that chair, you can buy the fabric from them and have a chair of your own upholstered in it!

      Good luck!


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