A pioneer that first brought Scandi design to American homes: Greta Magnusson Grossman

I first came across the Scandinavian furniture designer Greta Magnusson Grossman a few years back while looking through an auction catalogue where I found an incredible desk lamp from the early 1950s that was designed by her.  I didn’t know a thing about her background, but loved the look of her pieces and sought to find out more.

Magnusson Grossman (1906-1999) was Swedish born and moved to southern California in 1940 and immediately dove into furniture and interior design, being one of the first to bring modern Scandi design to American homes.  In her time she was very well known as a lone woman in a man’s field and was popular with female  clients like Ingrid Bergman and Greta Garbo.  Her furniture is classic mid-century modern with clean lines incorporating modern finishes and stands up with the best of the Eames’, Knoll or Saarinen.   Don’t you love that amazing screen – I can’t quite figure out how those colorful spheres float in the space!

The very talented Magnusson Grossman worked largely alone and in limited production runs, and so without children and heirs to keep her name in the forefront of design, she drifted into obscurity.  Lucky for us, there is a resurging interest in her work.  One can find original vintage pieces at auction or with dealers like R Gallery, Manhattan.  Beautiful authorized re-issues are made by Gubi, Stockholm.

image credits: designmilk via R Gallery
Thank you for stopping by and reading my feature today.  I love what I do as an interior designer and art advisor, and it’s my hope that through these blog posts I’m enriching and heightening your aesthetic sensibility towards art, design and fabulous interiors in some way ~ Richard Rabel (a.k.a. the modern sybarite)