Modernist and father of the International Style, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe was truly a master of combining the austere with the luxurious, a concept employed on his earliest projects with Lily Reich including Villa Tugendhat in Brno, Czech Republic (1928-1930). The master Architect designed spacious open areas, combining cold materials Onyx and Travertine marble with sweeping surfaces veneered in warm rosewood. With its severe and modern rectilinear form and choice of graphic Macassar ebony veneer, this rare desk exemplifies this concept. The vertically applied veneer and seamless integration of three drawers with ebony escutcheons reinforce van der Rohe’s architectural approach and sharp eye for detail. Almost floating in space, the slim and refined legs echo the Architect’s later masterworks including Farnsworth House (1945-51) and Seagram Building (1958). Two other comparable desks exist, one for the Crous apartment in Berlin (1930) and Lange House in Krefeld (1928-1930), both designed in collaboration Lily Reich.
Literature: Werner Gräff, Innenräume, Stuttgart 1928 , Page 65 Ill. 105 Christiane Lange, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe & Lilly Reich, Möbel und Räume, Hatje Cantz 2007, Page 118 (Lange) page 155 (Crous) Reuter/Schulte, Mies und das neue Wohnen, Hatje Cantz, 2008. Pages 129/130