Josef Frank has had an enormous impact on the history of Swedish design. Despite the fact that he was already 50 years old when he fled Nazism for Sweden and Svenskt Tenn, the Austrian architect and designer is considered to be one of Sweden’s most important designers of all time.
As a young man, Josef Frank was a part of early Vienna Modernism’s front figures, Frank represented a freer, more artistic style ideal, and he developed his own type of modernism with values such as comfort, hominess and a wealth of colour in focus. He perceived tubular steel furniture as a threat to humanity. By contrast he wanted to include nature’s colours and forms in interior design and to be able to breathe and feel free even in enclosed rooms. For the same reason he preferred furniture that people could see through, a chair should have an open back and a cupboard should be on legs that were so high that one could distinguish the borderline between the floor and the wall.