Rasmus Graversen and the heritage of the Danish design school

8 August 2023

Rasmus Graversen

The designer, third generation at the helm of Fredericia, takes on contemporary themes by pursuing sustainability and quality

Being a designer and having the opportunity to lead the prestigious family business is an opportunity as well as a risk. And if it is one of the main Danish companies, the theme is the confrontation with a very important and deeply rooted tradition. And it’s the mission of Rasmus Graversen, third generation at the helm of Fredericia, a Danish company born in 1911 and managed by his family since 1950, when his grandfather Andreas Graversen acquired it on the condition that Børge Mogensen was the unique designer. This partnership will be the basis on which the company will grow and the same will happen with Nanna Ditzel, a fundamental figure for Fredericia in the second half of the 1900s. Bringing this prestigious and cumbersome heritage into the present and projecting it into the future is today the task of Rasmus, the third generation who tell his storiy and measure himself with respect and experimentation with the icons of the past.

As the 3rd generation of Fredericia, what is your personal contribution/innovation to the company?

Under my design leadership, we have created coherence between our heritage designs from my grandfather and the experimental approach of my father’s designs. The result is a contemporary design collection where our values are translated to modern needs. I curate the classic designs and create the relation to our current collection. Our latest designs the Plan Collection by Barber Osgerby and the Gomo Collection by Hugo Passos, are examples of what I call next-generation contract products, where modern sustainability demands are an essential part of the design process.

What are the main characteristics of the Danish style?

The clarity in form – and it might also be perceived as a little romantic – while not being afraid of building on tradition. All materials have a specific purpose in the design, so it is very rational but still sculptured. It is less conceptual than the Italian approach, sometimes a little less daring, but always very nice to live with in your everyday life.

Could you tell us more about Nanna Ditzel and Fredericia’s focus on her work?

Nanna Ditzel was an extraordinary woman who was a mentor for my father. She helped Fredericia break free of the box where we would only do what was “expected” by our mid-century heritage, and instead, she challenged conventional thinking. Her experimental designs refreshed our collection, and the classic Mogensen furniture was seen through a new lens and appreciated for its iconic value. Nanna was a genuinely international designer, and she fostered new collaborations for us and checked us into the world of contemporary design.

What is Fredericia’s approach to production and sustainability?

Sustainability is paramount to us and has been since my grandfather’s time. The ethics of producing long-lasting products that people will take care of and that honor the materials used was deeply rooted in his philosophy. Today we work systematically to become a carbon-neutral company, secure transparency, and traceability on all materials through the supply chain, and work with our local community to create jobs for people who might have difficulty working under normal circumstances. We recently got the acknowledgement of becoming a so-called “Benefit Corporation”, which certifies that our operations as a business unit also give back to society and improve conditions.

We have our own upholstery factory in Denmark, where we are proud to maintain crafts that would otherwise disappear from Denmark. That said, we also have access to a modern supply chain with European subcontractors on more price-sensitive contract products where it is sometimes necessary to scale up production very fast to deliver on time. We take great pride in being transparent about our operations, even though this is not the norm in the furniture business. Our sustainability report can be downloaded from our website for the ones who want to go in-depth with our goals and accomplishments.

Fredericia Ana Table
Fredericia Ditzel
Fredericia Fellow
Fredericia Islets
Fredericia The Spanish Chair
Fredericia Trinidad Chair
Fredericia Wegner Queen Chair

Our experience,
your story

Let our designers guide you through the creation of new tailored spaces

Let's begin

Choose the products that inspire you and add them to the Board

Customize and receive your board, share it with whomever you want or with a Mohd Designer to get information and assistance.

After you send the first one, you can create new boards. There is no limit to your inspiration.

I got it, continue

Receive your Mohdboard with the products you have added.

Send in the form, you will receive an email with a link to your board with the products you have selected.

Share your inspiration with your partner and friends, or with a Mohd designer to get more information.

After you send the first board, you can create new ones. And if this board no longer inspires you, you can reset and start again.

Check your email, your inspiration is there.

We have sent you an email with a link to your board with the products you have selected.