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Common Mid-Century Design Misattributions List

- 06 Aug 2013 -
43 posts / 0 new

As I couldn't find one in a search, I thought I'd start a thread for common mid-century design misattributions. It would be good to have a list (with photo) of the most popular ones in one spot for handy reference. Hopefully there is some interest on this board to expand this to be of some use.

I'll go first. Although, most here already know this, this desk was not designed by Jens Quistgaard, but rather Peter Løvig Nielsen. It is often stamped "Lovig Dansk Design", but this mark has nothing to do with Quistgaard's Dansk brand. "Dansk" is simply the Danish word for "Danish". (photo from 1stDibs)

(edited to add:) It would also be good to include link references to previous DA threads on a particular piece, for those interested in additional info.


- 06 Aug 2013

Møller models 55 & 71
Designed by Arne Hovmand Olsen, but attributed, even by Møller to N.O. Møller. There must be a sordid story in back of this one.

- 06 Aug 2013

Aren't those the real...
Aren't those the real Mollers?

Here are the Mogens Kold Hovmand-Olsens that do look similar and often get confused for the Mollers.

- 06 Aug 2013

Yes those are real møllers
As in produced by J.L. Møller, but not if you mean designed by N.O. Møller. Attached is a vintage ad showing the Hovmand Olsen design credit, and a couple of catalog scans.

edit: adding this remark: If it is not generally considered to be established that the the 55 & 71 are correctly attributed to Arne Hovmand Olsen, I invite anyone to open another thread opening that discussion, and I will be happy to remove this post from this thread until it seems to be properly established either way. As I understand it this thread is not for "contested" attributions, but known false ones. That said I don't see any way to discredit Arne Hovmand Olsen for the chairs given the attached scans, and the strong similarity to the chair in the known oeuvre of Hovmand Olsen. And, I am sure there must be a story behind how the credit came to be changed. Probably it involved money, lawyers, and an angry architect.

- 06 Aug 2013

Per Simon
Who says this came from James France, this sofa, commonly attributed to Grete Jalk, and occasionally to Finn Juhl, is actually an in-house France and Søn "design," which is to say they stretched the matching lounge chair that Grete did design to create a suite.

- 06 Aug 2013

by the way
I wrote something here which was actually not the case.. sorry! ;-)

- 06 Aug 2013

Dan Johnson
The "Drumstick Chair", typically attributed to Kofod-Larsen (on the left), is actually the "Viscount Chair" designed by Dan Johnson, according to this ad. There are numerous correct attributions on the web, however this piece is more often than not, attributed to Kofod-Larsen.

- 06 Aug 2013

Not Willy Rizzo
This one is regularly described as Willy Rizzo or Willy Rizzo for Mario Sabot...It is Mario Sabot and nothing to do with Rizzo. I once emailed the Rizzo's about this and they seemed to insinuate there may have been some friction / legal issues between them and Sabot.

Also in this line are the sideboard and vitrine...the tell tale faceted corner pieces confirm should always identify these designs as Sabot.

Ps: This thread has so far cleared up two things for me....The Abeln coffee table which thankfully was the name we attributed to the one I am selling and the non Kofod chair by artsnot....thanks.

- 07 Aug 2013

Nice lamps but these are always described as being by Terence Conran (even by me if I'm honest) though as far as I know there is not a shred of evidence to support this assertion....

- 24 Dec 2013

not Jean Prouvé but Jacques Hitier
Adjustable children's school desk mostly attributed to Jean Prouvé:

In a book called 'Jacques Hitier, Modernité industrielle' by Pierre Gencey is an old Mobilor catalogue which shows this version of the school desk:

The curved version appears to be by Mullca:

- 28 Dec 2013

vintage brochures, magazines, books
back in the late 20th century (the 80's) when the mcm rage became retro, before the digital age of online (mis)information overload and muti-tasking, vintage brochures, design magazines, furniture books and museum exhibition catalogs published during the period where the only reliable reference or source of accurate information in terms of mcm design attributions. it seems antiquated and too old school to most people today to use real bounded stacks of paper collecting dust on the shelves of most public and school libraries as sources of accurate information. not too long ago being able to do research this way was a skill that someone has to develop before moving on to third grade level. it sad to say too that even the so called recent experts in the field who wrote magazine articles and published books about design in the last twenty years produced materials riddled with so many mcm design misattributions.

fortunately, there are still some people (like in this thread)who subscribe to this old fashioned method of sourcing accurate infornation and mcm design attribution.

- 28 Dec 2013

I see these posted in my...
I see these posted in my area about once a month attributed to George Nelson. It's the famous American of Martinsville line with the inlaid X's on the surfaces. Ive seen Dressers, Nightstands, End/side tables, Sideboards and Dining tables that are part of this line.


While the furniture is nice and relatively well made, dealers usually charge a premium based on the so-called George Nelson attribution.

- 29 Dec 2013

I am glad you posted that one, and I think you are right about your assertion. But given this is a thread partially about accuracy your statement


could use the addition "that I know of" in it. Otherwise, to me, it reads that you have personal knowledge all existing American of Martinsville documents related to this line and also all Nelson documents that could be related as well. Just a thought.

- 29 Dec 2013

Anothe Quistgaard Misattribution
This table is too, often attributed to Jens Quistgaard for Nissen. It was actually made in Sweden and distributed by Dux.

- 29 Dec 2013

Glassartist,None of the...
None of the George Nelson biographies ever mention any work for American of Martinsville. The line is also based on an earlier in-house (and much uglier) line that American of Martinsville produced about 4-5 years earlier. It also featured the inlaid X motif and simple screw-on legs of the end/side tables.

- 30 Dec 2013

First let me apologize. I thought long and hard before I posted and tried to make my point as clearly as I could. By your response it is plain that I failed. I have no problem with your assertion about the Martinsville pieces not being nelson and said as much in my previous post. The fact that you answered as if I was disputing your claim about a bad attribution made me realize my point was not clear. My problem is with absolutist statements rarely being strictly true and that they could benefit from a softening like adding "as far as I know" to your original all caps statement.
Please accept my apologies for my inept attempt at clarity.

- 30 Dec 2013

this stools
This stools wrongly attributed to Salterini had been cleared as Umanoff/Granada-Series by Jonathan Goldstein on Umanoff blog/website. I sold some of these, the tags were there but they had the producer name cut-off... Obviously some sellers did that to hide that it is not Salterini. I couldnt believe it when i saw the tags in perfect condition except for the producer being cut-off...

- 30 Dec 2013

Here's another good one.I...
Here's another good one.
I always see these travertine topped tables attributed to Bertha Shaefer for M. Singer & Sons. You can also find them occasionally attributed to Gio Ponti, probably because the stone tops were imported from and marked 'made in italy' on the undersides.

These were actually made by an American company called Gordon's Inc. based in Johnson City, Tennessee. There is no known designer for them and while they look pretty cool, they are actually not very well made.

- 30 Dec 2013

Jean Royére "Hirondelle Table"
This table is ofter missttributed to Jean Royére. It's actually a fish tank table. Back in 2003, one actually sold at auction for over 12,000.00 Euros...oops.

- 10 Jan 2014

it can depend on the relation...
it can depend on the relationship the designer has woth the manufacturer. SOme designers sell the design to the manufacturer outright. Some work for the manufacturer. Some agree a contract with the manufacturer and receive a royalty each time one is sold. So if sold to the manufacturer then it is possible it would be attributed to them.

This lot make them now:

perjhaps they could clear up any misunderstanding.

- 28 Nov 2016

This design line of dressers and nightstands is frequently credited to Edmond Spence. However, as per this vintage ad, the Swedish Guild Collection line was designed by William Hinn for Urban Furniture.

- 28 Nov 2016

. . . and here is a Gordon's Fine Furniture ad that was uploaded to a dedicated thread previously.

- 29 Nov 2016

Thanks for the William Hinn design credit on those case pieces. I've always thought they are stunning.

- 29 Nov 2016

Does anyone know if this table is from Gordon's Inc. as well?

- 17 Jul 2017

These dining chairs were designed by Villy Schou Andersen, for his company, Schou Andersen. It is often incorrectly attributed as designed by Ejnar Larsen and Aksel Bender-Madsen for Willy Beck.

A simple tell is that the SA chairs have concave top/bottom edges for the backrest, while WB has convex edges.

The arm chair is model #61, with the side chair #60.

- 17 Jul 2017

Until today, this one had me fooled for the last four years, including three where I actually owned it.

This tea trolley (serving cart, bar cart, etc) is almost always credited as being designed by Johannes Andersen for CF Christensen (who is often referred to as CFC Silkeborg).

While CF Christensen did indeed make it, the designer was actually Henning Korch. Attached is vintage attribution from Den Permanente in 1972. A Bruun-Rasmussen listing cites another source and notes it as model 308:

Since Andersen was the most famous designer for CF Christensen, it is easy to see a scenario where someone (or someones) saw the CFC label on the cart and just assumed it was by Andersen. And it just snowballed from there.

In fact, the Danish furnitureindex cites Andersen as the designer for "CFC Silkeborg". One look at their source, Lauritz, and the misattribution becomes clear. I have send them proper sourcing info for this cart and hopefully they update their database. There is currently another listing for a Henning Korch serving cart in their database, but all of the photos are missing (not very helpful).

- 18 Jul 2017

. . .might I add that the Korch cart is in nice company next to the 45 chair in the DP staging photo.

- 18 Jul 2017

I had never heard of him before stumbling across that Den Permanente page. The DFI does have some listings for him with Silkeborg Mobelfabrik. Assuming those listings are correct, then he designed for two manufacturers in Silkeborg, and there is then a strong likelihood that he lived there.

- 18 Jul 2017

Henning Korch designed the Alabama line for Silkeborg Møbelfabrik (second half of the 60s). I have a few vintage ads if you guys are interested.

From what I know, he was based in Switzerland, in Lugano I believe.

- 18 Jul 2017

Ok. He was indeed based in Lugano, Switzerland and apparently he also designed furniture for some Italian companies.

These 3 ads are from Mobilia:
- December 1966
- April 1967
- December 1967

- 18 Jul 2017

Thanks, Dr P.

Could I request a favor? I just bought a round extension dining table this past Sunday. It took two days and a number of Google searches to figure out it was model 125/3, designed by Willy Sigh for H Sigh & Son. The design component that easily distinguishes it from other tables is the "skinny coffin" top profile for the legs.

And I believe I see part of it in the left page of the middle image. Could you please post a photo of the full page? Thanks a lot.

- 28 Nov 2017

Due to its framing similarities with the Bambi chairs, this chair (and its siblings), is often incorrectly attributed as being designed by Rastad and Relling.

It is actually made by the Norwegian manufacturer, Møre Lenestolfabrikk, with vintage documentation citing an in-house design (ML-design). This chair is model "Klarinett", with the names of other similar models shown in the attachments.

In the U.S., you will often see this chair labeled with the importer, Westnofa.

- 28 Nov 2017

I have so many Panton related misattributions so not sure where to start :)
Was thinking of doing a whole thread of just Panton, one of the most misattributed designers ever i believe.

But lets start here with the Lampetit from Louis Poulsen.
I see this lamp every week for sale and attributed to Verner, but i always doubted it.
When i bought all the LP Nyt magazines earlier this year i got the answer that it was and in house Louis Poulsen design by Bent Gantzel Boysen.

With a quick google search i found this link that also found the info in LP Nyt.

(Great design blog by the way, but only in Danish)

- 28 Nov 2017

Some browsers---I think it's the browser doing it, anyway---will automatically translate sites if you want. I use Chrome and that Danish site pops up in English with a field that asks me if I want all future sites in Danish to be translated. It's quite a nice feature.

- 04 Apr 2018

The Vatne Mobler chair/sofa series, with the outward curved wood armrests, was not designed by Hans Olsen, but rather Knut Saeter, the founder and owner of Vatne Mobler.

The Olsen chair is very similar, but has leather-covered arms. From what I can find, CS Mobler and Brande both made this same design, or they each made very similar versions of this design.

- 25 Apr 2018

I noticed something odd with Wright's auction that is coming up. There were 2 vases attributed to Ettore Sottsass for Bitossi - striped vases from the 1950's. In fact, there are about 15 or so models in the "rochetto" series, but only 2 actually ever attributed to Sottsass. I've in the past even seen the publication with the attribution. However, Wright is now selling them and not mentioning Sottsass's name at all. The odd thing is, on the web sites that support live bidding from Wright and others, previous sold results with the attribution appear to have been removed - like some auction houses are covering their tracks. Anyone have any insight into this?

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