Danish silver and jewellery
Denmark's reputation for design is built on many industries, including the success of Georg Jensen and other leading Danish silversmiths and jewellery designers. We discuss Georg Jensen and his designers in a separate article. There are equally outstanding pieces from Norway, Sweden and Finland.
Aagaard, Jens Johannes
Jens Johannes Aagaard is a contemporary Danish silversmith, established in 1946 in Svendborg. One of their young designers, Lasse Lærke, became chief designer.
Aarre & Krogh
Danish mid-twentieth century silversmiths, based in Randers in Jutland. The workshop was in operation from 1949 to 1990.
Just Andersen started making jewellery in his workshop in 1918. He introduced pieces inspired by the simple forms of Nordic pre-historic jewellery. Just Andersen died in 1943 and his widow became artistic director. Karen Strand, Arje Griegst and Jane Wiberg were all apprentices in the post-war period. The company closed in 1973.
Volmer Bahner was Denmark's best-known specialist enamel company. It was registered from 1962 to 1988. The designs are innovative, especially the beautiful guilloche enamel floral pieces such as the cala lily. This was made in several colours including blues, white and deep red. This design was used for brooches, earrings, bracelets and even necklaces. Bahner also produced simple, non-figurative designs in the Art Deco style. The most instantly identifiable Volmer Bahner designs are his hearts and animal motifs, including fish and butterflies.
Modernist silversmith. Palle Bisgaard opened his workshop in Kirke Hyllinge, a hamlet outside Roskilde in the 1950s. He still lives there.
The Bjerring Brothers ran their workshop in Copenhagen from 1962 to 1988. Their production was characterised by designs incorporating semi-precious stones in pendants, brooches and rings.
It only existed for 10 years, from 1961 to 1971.
Ib Bluitgen, born 1921, trained as a silversmith at Georg Jensen and worked in the theirdesign department from 1948 to 1962. Bluitgen opened his studio in 1961 and was one of the founders of the Danish Crafts Council. Bluitgen's work has been exhibited throughout Europe and North America.
Bülow-Hübe, Vivianna Torun
See Georg Jensen article
Cohr, Carl M
Founded in 1860 in Fredericia, Jutland. In the first half of the twentieth century the Carl Cohr was best known for cutlery (flatware) and hollowware, and to a lesser extent, jewellery. Hans Hansen and Bent Knudsen were apprentices there.
Eric Dennung added jewellery production to his star status as a footballer. Much of his work is in the Brutalist style and he often silver plated base metal.
Eiler & Marloe
Silversmiths active during the first half of the 20th Century in Copenhagen, Denmark. They numbered their designs, many of which are Art Deco or functionalist
Algot Chr. Enevoldsen
Algot Chr. Enevoldsen started production in 1950, and produced high-quality modernist jewellery. Per Enevoldsen developed the Pandora bead concept.
Silversmith established in 1933 in Copenhagen. Elner Fehrn specialised in the production of amber jewellery. He also started the retail outlets ' House of Amber', promoting Baltic amber.
In 1953 Orla Eggert was inspired to create moulds from the herbs and flowers of his garden. He turned these into jewellery by layering the silver base with 18ct gold. The company is still going strong and now produces its designs in both gold and silver.
Volmer Bahner turquoise silver and enamel salt and pepper
Niels Erik From Silver and amber bangle
From, Niels Erik
Niels Erik From was born in 1908 and trained as a silversmith. Sinewy foliage and floral pieces characterise the early years. Bold modernist pieces were introduced in the 1960s.
Frydensberg, Carl Ove
Carl Ove Frydensberg esigner and maker of high-quality silver jewellery in Copenhagen from 1949 to 1982. He is listed in Fred Rezazadeh's book Collectible Silver Jewellery.
Royal Copenhagen pendant/brooch with a Flora Danica porcelain image in a silver-gilt frame
Bent Gabrielsen qualified as a goldsmith in 1949 after serving his apprenticeship with the goldsmith Ejler Fangel in Copenhagen. He was hired by the Hans Hansen Solvsmedie and worked there until 1969. By the time he left, he was responsible for the firm's entire production. After leaving the Hans Hansen company, Gabrielsen set up his workshop called "Gabrielsen's Guldsmedie". As well as his own production, he produced jewellery for Georg Jensen
Guldsmedenes Indkøbsforening. was founded in 1959 as a commissioning, purchasing and marketing consortium. It has 45 individual retailers.
The Hugo Grün silversmith workshop operated from 1918 to 1985. The designs span from late Art Nouveau, ('skønvirke' in Danish), through Art Deco functionalism to 1940s floral and post-second world war modernism.
Hansen, Jens Tage
Jens Tage Hansen established his silver works in Copenhagen 1954 when he met the artist Aage Gitz-Johansen.
Hans Hansen (1884-1940) started silver flatware production in the 1920s in the Jutland town of Kolding. His son, Karl Gustav was apprenticed in his father's workshop in 1932. He was helped by Bent Gabrielsen, artistic director from 1953 to 1969. Karl Gustav created a series of designs in a simpler, functionalist style which he called 'Future'.
Several Danish modernist silversmiths started their careers at Hans Hansen - Bent Knudsen, Eigil Jensen (who went on to work for Anton Michelsen) and Allan Scharff who progressed to Georg Jensen. One of Scharff's most famous designs, sold as 'Alliance' by Georg Jensen, was designed during his time with Hans Hansen. The company was taken over by the Royal Scandinavia Group in 1991 and incorporated into Georg Jensen.
The company Bernhard Hertz was established in 1858 in Copenhagen, nearly 50 years before Georg Jensen. They designed and produced silver jewellery in all major stylistic eras. They were leaders in the field of 'Skønvirke' (Art Nouveau) in the early 20th century. They were taken over by Lund in 2007.
Large and renowned Danish silversmith, whose initials W&SS stand for founders, Brødrene W & S Sørensen of Horsens. Sold to Cohr in 1984, it has since been incorporated into the Gense cutlery company.
Jacob Hull sold his work in Illums Bolighus, the flagship retail outlet for Danish Design, in the 1970s. Hull created one-off pieces of jewellery in solid silver and silver-plated pieces, many of which were created for Buch + Deichmann.
See Georg Jensen article
There are three Danish makers listed who used the initials H.J and were all called Hans Jensen & Co.
Arne Johansen qualified as a silversmith in 1951 and started his workshop in Roskilde in 1954. His whole family became involved in the production and sale of his master of his modernist designs until 1993.
Knudsen, Bent & Anni
Bent Knudsen (1924-1997) trained at Carl Cohr then worked for Hans Hansen. He opened his own workshop in 1956 with his wife Anni. Their creations were always marked Bent K. Production of silver items was phased out during the 1970s.
For Henning Koppel, see Georg Jensen article
Lynggaard , Ole
Established in 1963 in Hellerup, it is still a family business with Lynggaard's daughter Charlotte assisting her father as designer and goldsmith. His son is the managing director, and his son-in-law is commercial director.
For Arno Malinowski, see Georg Jensen article
Meka Reklamegaver operated in Holte, north of Copenhagen, from 1951 to 1989, prodicing included enamelware (spoons etc) as well as jewellery.
The Anton Michelsen works were founded in 1841. Georg Jensen was apprenticed to Anton Michelsen in the 1890s, not the other way round! Michelsen set up a subsidiary in Sweden during WW II and for some time after. MIC was the maker's mark used for items produced in Sweden. This mark is often seen on Gertrud Engel designs of the 1950s, although they were also made in Denmark. In Sweden, they also cooperated with the Swedish company Borgila. Since the 1950s, Anton Michelsen has acknowledged its designers by stamping their signatures on each piece. Designers of the mid and late 20th century include Karen Strand, Gertrud Engel, Eigil Jensen, Nanna & Jørgen Ditzel, Knud V Andersen and Jens Windfeld Hansen. The business was purchased by the Royal Porcelain Manufactory in 1968 (Royal Copenhagen). Royal Copenhagen subsequently purchased Georg Jensen. Michelsen was merged with Jensen, and today only the annual forks and spoons bear the Michelsen name.
Andreas Mikkelsen joined Georg Jensen in 1955 and ended up managing director. He collaborated with the silversmith Ove Wendt between 1970 and 1978. In the late 1980s, he started designing jewellery and other gifts for the Georg Jensen.
Brother of Georg Jensen’s third wife Johanne, Harald Nielsen joined the firm in 1909, aged 17. He helped to establish the Jensen style and the firm’s tradition for outstanding quality.
Henry Pilstrup was Georg Jensen’s first apprentice. He produced many designs in silver and gold for the company whilst he was foreman of the jewellery workshop. His first major design for a necklace (no.4) was purchased by the Art and Industry Museum in Copenhagen in1909.
Started in early 1985 in Aarhus. Pia Rauff now makes bespoke jewellery, paints and sculpts and teaches.
Herman Siersbol opened his silver workshop in April 1945. He created affordable quality jewellery in modern designs and the company is one of the largest gold and silver works in Scandinavia. Herman Siersbol died in a tragic accident in 1964 and the company was taken over by his four children. His son Henrik Siersbol is now the sole owner and runs the company with his daughter Camilla.
The silverware factory has existed since 1853. It still produces an extensive range of wedding rings as well as silver jewellery. The senior designer is Troels Tvenstrup, who is the fifth generation of his family to work for the company.
Torun, Vivianna Torun Bülow-Hübe
See Georg Jensen article
Poul Warmind was a modernist who worked in Kirke Såby near Roskilde from 1963 to 1983. Well known for his technique of matt enamelling. He also produced modernist pieces in gold and pewter.
Carl Ove Frydensberg silver heart-shaped Brooch with inset Viking ship
Bent Gabrielsen for Georg Jensen Modernist silver ‘Peak’ necklace
Signed Hans Hansen spoon 1934
Bernhard Hertz vintage silver bracelet with blue guilloche enamel
Henning Koppel necklace for Georg Jensen no.273
Anton Michelsen silver and blue enamel brooch
Herman Siersbol modernist Danish silver brooch c.1948
Herman Siersbol necklace with pink stones set in silver