Bas van Pelt modernist writing desk Netherlands 1950





Striking modernist writing desk designed by Bas van Pelt and manufactured by Van Pelt in the Netherlands in 1950. This desk is a perfect example of modernism. No unnecessary additions to the design. Beautiful waterfall edges on the sides. Two drawers incorporated into the shape with a shelve attached. On the top drawer is a key to lock it. The two handles to open the drawers are made from wood as well. Super simple and elegant silhouette. The desk and especially the top has an astonishing original patina from age and usage. This writing desk tells and breaths a great story. Who worked here, what books were written or what great ideas started at this desk? It is marked with the My Home, Bas van Pelt stamp and aluminium tag.


Chair on the pictures is not included in this listing.


Winning a small design competition in 1924 was enough for Bas van Pelt to choose a career in design for good. After working in a printing press, he ended up in Overschie in 1927, at the furniture factory of J.C. Jansen, his future father-in-law. Here, he drew his first designs in various styles. Sometimes in the style of the Amsterdam School, sometimes in a simple, sleek style more akin to designers like Hendrik Wouda (1885-1946) or Jan Muntendam (1882-1938). In 1931, at the urging of his father-in-law, Bas J. van Pelt ultimately took over the furniture store ‘My Home Woninginrichting’ in The Hague, making it a successful business in modern home furnishing. Bas van Pelt set himself apart by also practicing interior design. From the beginning, My Home/Bas van Pelt focused on modern furniture, which in The Hague in the early 1930s was strongly influenced by the designs of Henk Wouda, Cor Alons, and Frits Spanjaard. Van Pelt was one of the first designers to extensively use products from third parties, which were more affordable due to their mass production, such as Thonet, D3, and Gispen, in his interior designs.


This approach led to great success for the company, resulting in branches in Amsterdam, Enschede, and Maastricht (Kunstzaal de Gulden Roos). Collaboration with Jan Piets since 1936. On May 10, 1940, during the bombings of Rotterdam, the storage warehouses in Schouwburgstraat in The Hague were destroyed by a stray bomb. This event prompted Bas van Pelt to actively participate in the resistance. Between 1943 and 1945, the country house ‘de Pal’ in Emst was used as a hiding place and ammunition storage. Officially, Bas van Pelt remained the director of My Home, but his father was registered as the director in his place. The business was kept running by two employees in the final years of the war. From May 1944, Bas van Pelt was imprisoned in various concentration camps, and on May 24, 1945, a few days after the liberation of the concentration camp, he passed away.

Designer: Bas van Pelt
Type: Writing desk
Manufacturer: Van Pelt
Year: 1950
Country: Netherlands
Materials: Stained oak
Condition: Very good, with patina
Height: 76 cm
Width: 115 cm
Depth: 60 cm
Item nr: AF22AP13

Holland / Belgium: € 50
Europe: € 150 - 500
Outside Europe: € 1000 - 2000

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