Danish furniture designer Kurt Østervig (1912-1986) began his career as a naval architect in Odense, Denmark’s third city. Changing career paths in favour of design, Østervig worked for manufacturer E. Knudsen before opening his own studio in 1947. He continued to work as a freelance designer for the rest of his career, collaborating with an array of Danish furniture brands in the mid-century era, including Bernh. Pedersen & Son, Bramin, Jason, Rolschau, Sibast, and Vamo, to name but a few.
Among Østervig’s most important designs are the Model 12 Easy Chair for Schillers Polstermøblerfabrik (1961; re-launched in 2014) and the Butterfly Dining Chair(1950s) for Brande. Østervig’s material of choice was oak, although his designs were also produced in rosewood and teak. Some sources reference Østervig’s participation in the Triennale di Milano in the 1950s and a Museum of Modern Art exhibition in the 1960s—although it is unclear which designs were shown at these venues.
Østervig was a well respected artist, known for his detailed, naturalistic drawings. His interiors projects included private homes, ships, nursing homes, hotels, and cinemas.
Today, Østervig’s designs continue to be produced by five manufacturers, but his mid-century productions remain in high demand, fetching high prices at auctions and vintage galleries around the world.