Frits Spanjaard for H. Pander & Zonen Blue Sideboard in Pau Ferro and Oak
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Frits Spanjaard for H. Pander & Zonen, sideboard, lacquered oak, pau ferro veneer, beech, The Netherlands, late 1920s
This cabinet is designed by Frits Spanjaard and belongs to the Hague School, a movement that emphasized geometric shapes, simple proportions and constructivist decorations. In the twentieth century, Spanjaard worked as an interior decorator, furniture designer and consultant. The designer aimed to create a cupboard that would take up a minimum of space in the room, but still provide enough storage space. The front is flanked with two compartments and one side is furnished with a thinly built compartment, allowing the user to use the cabinet in width and depth. The construction is executed in black lacquered oak and the door panels are painted in a bright opaque blue color, which results in strong color contrasts. The cubic corpus is supported by a plateau in pau ferro that shows expressive wood grains. Although the entire construction rests on asymmetrical proportions between different elements, the cabinet nevertheless looks balanced due to the recurring shapes and the use of only two colors.
Frederik Salomon Spanjaard was born on October 30, 1889 in Borne, where he grew up in a wealthy environment. Between 1914 and 1918, he studied architecture at the Technische Hogeschool in Delft. After his studies, he started working as a draftsman at the H. Pander & Zonen furniture factory in The Hague from 1918 to 1919 to gain experience as an interior decorator. From that moment on, Spanjaard drew simple, sleek furniture designs under the influence of the work of the Dutch architect and furniture designer Hendrik Wouda (1885-1946), who also worked for the same company during this period. His designs from the 1920s were characterized by a logical form, sober and straight-lined, whereby a decoration was subordinate to the constructive element. These stylistic elements belonged to the 'Berlagian' design principle. In 1919, Spanjaard left to work as a designer for the Oosterbeek furniture factory 'Labor Omnia Vincit' (LOV). After his departure in 1922, his designs continued to exist in the collection. His furniture for that period of time was bold and experimental, which was evident in his use of color combinations and simple form. Therefore, his designs have a special place in the history of furniture design. After his trip through Europe, Spanjaard started working independently as an interior architect in The Hague. According to him, each piece of furniture had to blend in with the entire space and was not seen as a separate object. His furniture belonged to the Hague School, a movement that emphasized the geometric form language, simple proportions and constructivist decorations. De Stijl played a major role in the development of the formal language and use of colors of this movement. Over the next thirty years, until 1958, he received various assignments in the field of interior architecture. On November 15, 1978, Frits Spanjaard passed away in Scheveningen.
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