Kaj Gottlob: Exceptionally rare, freestanding Brazilian rosewood secretaire. Made by cabinetmaker A.J. Iversen.


Exceptionally rare, freestanding Brazilian rosewood secretaire. Front with drop down writing leaf, interior with 13 drawers of lemon wood (so called satinwood) with ivory handles. “Shoes” and all edges with ebony inlays. Fittings of silver plated brass. Designed approx. 1938. This example made 1943 by cabinetmaker A.J. Iversen, with maker's paper label. H. 119 cm. W. 100 cm. D. 40/83 cm.

Variant with 13 drawers of the model presented at The Copenhagen Cabinetmakers' Guild Exhibition at Designmuseum Danmark 1938.

The writing desk or secretaire with the drop leaf and a box-like body placed on a tall, slim legframe was a type of furniture that Kaj Gottlob would return to in his designs over the years. From his early years in the 1920s, where he designed a variation on this theme for himself, up until the 1960s he would create examples that would be among his most elaborate, playful, and luxurious pieces of furniture. Working together with Cabinetmaker A.J. Iversen these pieces featured inlays, precious materials, exotic woods and ultra delicate craftsmanship of the cabinetmaker. The present piece belongs to a very small series of 3 different variants that Gottlob designed around 1938–40. It is easy to see similarities to the work of Émile-Jacques Ruhlmann but research into the archives of Kaj Gottlob show that his fascination with this type of furniture mainly has a different origin. Gottlob had a great admiration in general for the English Arts & Crafts style from the years around 1900 and in particular for the furniture of Ernest Gimson, the legendary founder of the Cotswold School. In his younger years, he travelled to England and made a complete measuring of one of Gimson's writing cabinets that would serve as a foundation for his work with this type.

This lot is subject to Artist's Royalty.

Condition report on request. Please contact: design@bruun-rasmussen.dk

Items that are made of Brazilian rosewood or contain parts of it, require a CITES export permit in order to be exported from Denmark to a country outside The European Union. Buyers residing outside the European Union are required to obtain this permit.


Design, 3 December 2019


Modern furniture


Kaj Gottlob (b. Copenhagen 1887, d. 1976)


75,000 kr.


Price realised

90,000 kr.