Josef Frank’s vision of humane, soft modernism and Estrid Ericsson’s artistry are the foundations of Svenskt Tenn’s interior design philosophy. Together, the duo created a highly personal style with a combination of Viennese elegance and Swedish functionalism.
Brightly coloured patterns went completely against the ideals of the day, as did unabashed borrowing from both high and low cultures and eras.
They called it “Accidentism” or “The Happy Chances Philosophy.” In 1958, Josef Frank wrote in the magazine Form: “There’s nothing wrong with mixing old and new, with combining different furniture styles, colours and patterns. Anything that is in your taste will automatically fuse to form an entire relaxing environment. A home does not need to be planned down to the smallest detail or contrived; it should be an amalgamation of the things that the owner loves and feels at home with.”
That such a way of thinking is applicable even today is something that many can attest to. Josef Frank is held in great repute, not the least among today’s young designers. His National Museum Cabinet has received a number of design accolades and his textiles are a source of inspiration for many young textile designers today.
Estrid Ericson and Josef Frank have succeeded in creating that timelessness which so many strive for but few manage to achieve.