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Knoll Introduces Risom Outdoor Collection

Design News

The Knoll Risom Outdoor Collection is anchored by the iconic Risom Lounge Chair & Ottoman, reimagined in solid teak and Sunbrella webbing..

Knoll is marking 75 years since the release of its first commissioned modern furniture collection—designed by the great Danish designer, Jens Risom—with the release of the Knoll Risom Outdoor Collection, a five-piece suite of seating and tables, "reimagined for the outdoors in the same spirit with which it was originally created." Comprising lounge chair and ottoman, side chair and two outdoor tables, the Knoll Risom Outdoor Collection brings uncommon elegance—and the cache of Risom's Mid Century classics—to the great outdoors.

The original Knoll Risom Collection has an exalted place in the Knoll catalogue, for having been the first of Knoll's many collaborations with storied modern designers. Stymied by the logistical and material limitations of Word War II, Hans Knoll, in search of furniture that could be produced locally, tapped Risom, already a master furniture maker, to create a collection of chairs, tables, and storage pieces exclusively for the Hans Knoll Furniture Company. That fortuitous 1941 meeting between Knoll and Risom, and its subsequent collaboration, yielded the iconoclastic 600 Series, as the Risom line was then called, a design range that would include the Risom Lounge Chair and Risom Side Chair, now amongst the most famous modern furniture profiles of the post-war period.

The Sunbrella® webbing of the Risom Outdoor Side Chair is available in 6 colors—including Carbon and Fern.

For his collection of modern furniture for Knoll, Jens Risom chose a combination of materials—recycled wood and leftover nylon webbing from parachute factories—that proved both inventive and iconoclastic.

A key figure in the 20th Century's Danish Modern movement, Jens Risom understood furniture making as both art and craft, having trained at the venerable Copenhagen School of Industrial Arts and Design, and studied under Kaare Klint, widely regarded as the father of modern Danish furniture. Like his celebrated Danish compatriots, Hans Wegner and Arne Jacobsen, Risom's eye for simple forms and impeccable workmanship was matched by his inventiveness for material applications.  

Working within the confines of a war-depleted material landscape, Risom chose for his “very basic, very simple, inexpensive, easy to make” Knoll furniture collection a combination of materials that proved both visionary and enduring. Introduced in 1953, the collection was engineered from recycled wood, with leftover nylon webbing sourced from parachute factories fashioned into upholstery—becoming a signature element of the Knoll Risom collection.  

Three-quarters of a century later, Knoll's Risom Outdoor Collection extends the original Risom suite with materials suited to endure the harsher conditions of external use. Tables and chair frames of oiled solid teak have been substituted for the indoor collection's walnut and maple wood choices, and webbing fashioned from fade-resistant Sunbrella® fabric stands in for the indoor collection's cotton webbing. A range of 6 Sunbrella® colors—including Ocher and Fern—complements and closely approximates the fabric choices of the indoor Risom range.

The Knoll Risom Outdoor Collection is part of the Annual Knoll Outdoor Sale. View the entire Knoll collection here >

The Risom Outdoor Ottoman can be used as either footstool or seat.

The iconic Knoll Risom Lounge Chair, now reimagined for the outdoors, is complemented by the Risom Outdoor Round Side Table.

Via Knoll