NIELS OTTO MØLLER 1920-1982
Niels Otto Møller is one of the most influential furniture craftsmen of his time.
His lifetime achievements are impressive and contributed to the continued production of high-quality, timeless, danish produced dining chairs for decades since his passing. Educated as a cabinetmaker, Niels Otto had not only an eye for design, but he was also a talented manufacturer and a frontrunner in his field in regard to modernizing and streamlining furniture production.
He built his own factory right outside his hometown of Aarhus, Denmark and over a forty-year period, designed and manufactured his own collection of dining room furniture. Talented in all aspects of wood furniture design, his chairs are what he became known for. His collection has received international recognition and high accolades both during his lifetime and after his passing. To this day, production of the Møller chairs is still entirely carried out at this factory.
Niels Otto Møller's stubbornness in upholding exceptional craftsmanship and his brilliant execution of beautiful timeless chair design is the reasoning behind the J.L. Møllers Møbelfabrik distinguished reputation and a leading exponent of Danish furniture's indisputable success all over the world.
Niels Otto Møller establishes his workshop in Aarhus, Denmark, and J.L. Møllers Møbelfabrik is founded. The 50 m2 space in the basement, was an old bicycle storage room. He begins working on commission-based projects, handcrafting individual furniture pieces, ranging from chairs to tables to lounge pieces.
Chair Model 71 and 55 are designed in 1951. This chair was selected for the Frank Lloyd Wright ‘Hanna House’ project in San Francisco. J.L. Møllers Møbelfabrik begins exporting to Germany and the U.S.A. and the factory moves to a larger workshop in Aarhus, Denmark. Chair Model 75 and 56 are designed in 1956 and Niels Otto Møller starts participating in furniture fairs worldwide. Chair Model 77 and 57 are designed in 1959.
Møller continues to achieve international success. A plot of land is purchased and a new factory is built, expanding from 150 to 3000 m2. Chair Model 78 and 62 are designed in 1962. Bench collection 63, 63A and 63B, as well as chair Model 79 and 64, are designed in 1966. Model 79 wins numerous awards and is showcased in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and the Museum fur Angewandte Kunst in Vienna. Chair Model 80 and 65 are designed in 1968. Model 65 was personally selected by the Queen of Denmark and can be found on Kongeskibet, the Royal Yacht.
The factory continues to expand and by the late 70s, it is now 7000 m2. Chair Model 82 is designed in 1970 and is nicknamed the “Embassy Chair” due to its popularity in use in embassies worldwide. Chair Model 83 and 66 are designed in 1974, the most complex chair to produce, representing the technological advancement in craft and production of J.L. Møllers Møbelfabrik's 30-year history. J.L. Møllers Møbelfabrik begins exporting to Japan and Niels Otto Møller wins the Danish Furniture Makers Association award for
"always working across time and fashion trends. His belief in timeless designed furniture and his ability to put the thought into practice have found in him a rarely distinguished league of his own. Elegant in shape and executed quality conscious in processing. His furniture has created a prestigious image around the world around the concept of Danish Design."
Niels Otto Møller’s youngest son Jørgen Henrik Møller designs Model 401, 402, and 404 in 1974. Since its release, this chair can be seen in churches, cathedrals and synagogues spanning from Japan to the United States. Chair Model 84 and 67 are designed in 1976.
J.L. Møllers Møbelfabrik wins the Danish Furniture Makers Association award for its ability to “combine the best craft traditions with modern furniture manufacturing.” Chair Model 85 and 68 are designed in 1981. Niels Otto Møller passes away and leaves his two sons and wife, whom all are deeply involved in the family company. His eldest son Jens Ole takes over leadership of the factory while his youngest son Jørgen Henrik continues to drive the sales momentum in the USA and Canada. Niels Otto Møller’s eldest son Jens Ole Møller designs Model 311 and 312.
NIELS OTTO MØLLER 1920-1982