The name ‘MR01 Initial’ pays homage to the Danish master’s practice of naming their designs with their own initials followed by a number and, in a subtle play on words, also references the fact this chair represents Rasmussen’s debut production piece.
Originally designed for his own home as a lounge chair he could also use for meditation, the MR01 Initial Chair by woodworker Mathias Steen Rasmussen unites traditional craftsmanship with original ideas in a simple form that is at once familiar and yet strikingly modern.
The open triangle profile of the frame – made from walnut or FSC-certified oak – is constructed without a single screw, relying instead on artisanal cabinetmaking techniques such as finger joints and wedged mortise and tenon joints. This approach makes its construction and materiality entirely visible, lending the piece a sense of honesty and highlighting the craftsmanship involved. The addition of rope is characteristic of Rasmussen, who often pairs complementary organic materials with wood, creating an aesthetic dialogue and co-relation between the two.
Mathias Steen Rasmussen (born 1990) is a young Danish designer with a seasoned and rigorous approach to furniture design. He has a background in art and cabinetmaking and completed his apprenticeship in 2019 with the highest honors.
When working on his own designs, his philosophy is “honesty in construction”. This means keeping the design process open to what an object consists of and how it is constructed, often with an affinity for showcasing the naked grain of the wood and visible joints.
As a trained cabinetmaker, wood is usually Rasmussen’s point of departure. He often brings in other natural materials such as glass, stone, and rope as textural contrasts, resulting in an aesthetic dialogue between colors, techniques, and surfaces. With an earnest respect for his materials and a keen sense of balance in form and function, his work respectfully nods to mid-century Danish design.