Jens Risom (1916-2016) changed America's perception of Danish modern furniture. One could argue, though, that Jens Risom’s spot in the canon of mid-century American design is one marked by displacement. Some of the accolades heaped upon the great designers should rightly have gone to Risom, who, with Hans Knoll, began priming the market for modern design as early as 1941 with the Risom-designed 600 line for Knoll. It included the first Knoll chair ever.

The sofa is a prototype that never went into production—the base slides out and the two cushions become flat for sleeping. Today, one can buy Risom furniture from a variety of sources, including Knoll, Design Within Reach, and Ralph Pucci.
Rocket Gallery Jens Risom Furniture
Edgeland House, built on a cliff-top lot in Austin by architect Thomas Bercy for lawyer and writer Chris Brown, is topped by a living roof that helps it blend into the landscape. The concrete, steel, and glass house is divided into two distinct public and private halves.
A low stone wall surrounds the perimeter, which Jens planted with trees in order to create a buffer between the house and the surrounding vista.
A portrait of the designer. “Architecture, to me, is the most beautiful of the arts. I always knew that I wanted to design, but only [if I could] create products over which I had total control.”
This shade has a levity about it that works well with both muted neutrals and darker colors. Benjamin Moore’s Blue Seafoam (2056-60) is a good example of a relaxing blue paint color that works well for interior and exterior walls.
On the north-facing facade, it’s easy to discern where the original glass doors used to open directly to the deck. In spring of 2012, Block Island contractor John Spier replaced the entire wall of glass panels.
Originally, glass doors opened to the deck, but after years of gusty winds, it was decided that a side entrance, protected by a sliding steel door, would be the preferred entrance.
An orange chair and cream ottoman of Risom's design.
A bright-yellow “R” sign, from a truck that used to deliver furniture from Jens Risom Design, sets off the southern facade. When Jens designed the house, he stipulated that he wanted cedar shingles, not the asphalt ones that came with the original design from the catalog.
In the living and dining area of Jean Risom's Block Island family retreat, mostly vintage Risom furnishings share space with a few new additions, the view facing north is framed by the wall of glass.

Photo by: Floto + Warner
The Risom Stool, $348
The Jens Ottoman, $467.50
Mid-century designer Jens Risom's A-framed prefab family retreat, located on the northern portion of Block island, is bordered by a low stone wall, an aesthetic element that appears throughout the land.
Chris Hardy and Jens Risom's Vens collection is on display at now at WantedDesign.
The Risom plot, located on the northern portion of the island, is bordered by a low stone wall, an aesthetic element that appears throughout Block Island.
The Risom Rocker (2009) has a nine-button tufted back; a nod toward the classic Danish modern aesthetic that can be found in all of Risom’s work. Made in U.S.A. Contact DWR for details
Mid-century walnut coffee table by Jens Risom, $1600. Read Amanda's article about Risom's family home off the coast of Rhode Island here.
The living room is outfiited with Jens Risom chairs found on eBay.