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Ant Chair
Iconic Designs

Ant Chair

About the Design

For almost anybody else in the early 1950s, designing a three-legged chair inspired by the shape of an ant with its head raised would be unthinkable. But Arne Jacobsen (1902–71), the modernist Danish designer and architect, was always ahead of his time. His Ant chair is part of his legacy of designing avant-garde, unusual and revolutionary chairs like the Egg, the Swan and the Drop.


As a child, Jacobsen covered the Victorian wallpaper in his bedroom with white paint, the beginning of a lifetime of pioneering new ideas in design and architecture. Soon after graduating from the School of Architecture at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Jacobsen set up his own practice, through which he could further his ideal of “total design.” This meant that for the architecture projects he undertook — such as the revered SAS Royal Hotel in Copenhagen — he was involved in the design of everything down to the last detail: from the exterior structure to the door handles to the carpets.


Over time, this attention to detail evolved into a pursuit of perfect proportions, a quality that is most prominent in his organic furniture pieces like the Ant chair. Originally called the Model 3100 and designed for the cafeteria of Danish pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk, the spare Ant chair (Myren in Danish) was inspired by plywood furniture crafted by American designers Charles and Ray Eames. Assisted by his then-apprentice Verner Panton, who would apply what he learned at Jacobsen’s practice to his own Cone chair and more, Jacobsen applied the Eameses’ groundbreaking ideas to the construction of his two-piece Ant chair — a seat and backrest made from a single piece of molded plywood supported by tubular metal legs. While the chair’s silhouette was unusual for the time, so too were its three legs. But Jacobsen insisted that in order for the chair to be functional and stackable — also uncommon in the 1950s — it couldn’t be any other way.


“I based my work on a need. What chairs are needed?” asked Jacobsen. In working toward his mission of creating functional furniture, Jacobsen inadvertently also created some of the most imaginative designs of the 20th century. The Ant chair is one of his most well-known designs.


Jacobsen’s longtime collaborator, Fritz Hansen, introduced the three-legged Ant chair as stipulated in 1952, despite complaints about its instability, and only introduced a four-legged version after Jacobsen’s death. It’s still manufactured today by Fritz Hansen and is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York and elsewhere.

Arne Jacobsen Ant Chair

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Arne Jacobsen Ant Chair for Fritz Hansen, Denmark, 1970s
By Fritz Hansen, Arne Jacobsen
Located in Dallas, TX
1970s Arne Jacobsen for Fritz Hansen "Ant Chair"; molded plywood with teak veneer supported by steel legs and makers cap to the underside of seat. Rich golden oak color. Good vintage...
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Mid-Century Modern Chairs

Materials

Steel

Mid-Century Modern Arne Jacobsen Rare Set of 6 Ant Chairs Model 3101
By Arne Jacobsen
Located in San Antonio, TX
Mid-Century Modern Arne Jacobsen rare set of 6 ant chairs model 3101 manufactured in 1970 by Fritz Hansen in Denmark. Imported from Europe, each ant chair has 4 tubular legs and the ...
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Mid-Century Modern Furniture

Materials

Chrome

Six Early Arne Jacobsen for Fritz Hansen Three-Legged Ant Chairs
By Arne Jacobsen, Fritz Hansen
Located in Pawtucket, RI
Set of six teak early three-legged Jacobsen Ant chairs manufactured by Fritz Hansen. See other listing for table. Signed.
Category

Vintage 1960s Danish Scandinavian Modern Dining Room Chairs

Materials

Steel

Set of 3 Black Arne Jacobsen Ant Chairs for Fritz Hansen, Denmark, 1950s
By Fritz Hansen, Arne Jacobsen
Located in Berlin, DE
Set of 3 dining or side chairs designed by Danish designer Arne Jacobsen, manufactured by Fritz Hansen. Please note that the chairs are an early production and show some signs of age...
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Mid-Century Modern Chairs

Materials

Metal

Arne Jacobsen Ant Chairs, Original Set from Early Production, 1952
By Fritz Hansen, Arne Jacobsen
Located in Madrid, ES
Early pieces of the iconic 'Ant' chairs designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1952. Stackable three-legged dining chairs model 3100 made by Fritz Hansen in Denmark. This set was produced in b...
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Scandinavian Modern Dining Room Chairs

Materials

Bentwood

Dining Table and Four Chairs, Designed by Arne Jacobsen for Fritz Hansen
By Arne Jacobsen
Located in Stockholm, SE
Dining table and four chairs, designed by Arne Jacobsen for Fritz Hansen, Denmark, 1965. Rosewood and stainless steel. Dimensions of the table: H 69 cm/ 27 1/4" L 115 cm/ 45 1/...
Category

Vintage 1960s Danish Scandinavian Modern Dining Room Sets

Materials

Rosewood

Arne Jacobsen Table and Four Ant Chairs Danish 1950s Midcentury Fritz Hansen
By Arne Jacobsen, Fritz Hansen
Located in Longdon, Tewkesbury
Magnificent midcentury Danish Arne Jacobsen for Fritz Hansen dining table fitted with chromed steel legs model 3600 with a set of four 'The Ant’ chairs in bent, laminated ply fitted ...
Category

Vintage 1950s Danish Mid-Century Modern Dining Room Sets

Materials

Plywood

Arne Jacobsen Ant Chairs, Original Set from Early Production, 1952
By Fritz Hansen, Arne Jacobsen
Located in Madrid, ES
Early pieces of the iconic 'Ant' chairs designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1952. Stackable three-legged dining chairs model 3100 made by Fritz Hansen in Denmark. This set was produced in b...
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Scandinavian Modern Dining Room Chairs

Materials

Bentwood

Midcentury Arne Jacobsen Egg Table and Ant Chair Set
By Arne Jacobsen, Fritz Hansen
Located in BROOKLYN, NY
For your consideration is this wonderful kitchen table or dining room set. The Egg table is visual genius with such a relatable / recognizable organic form. Perfectly paired with fou...
Category

Mid-20th Century Danish Scandinavian Modern Dining Room Sets

Materials

Metal

Rare Set of Six Arne Jacobsen Ant Chairs with Drop-Leaf Table
By Arne Jacobsen, Fritz Hansen
Located in Redding, CT
Rare set of six Arne Jacobsen Ant chairs Model #3100 with matching drop-leaf table. Manufactured by Fritz Hansen, 1950s label. Table has custom piece glass top if desired. Small flea...
Category

Vintage 1950s Danish Scandinavian Modern Dining Room Chairs

Materials

Chrome

Arne Jacobsen Egg Table with Three Ant Chairs, Mfg. Fritz Hansen
By Arne Jacobsen
Located in New York, NY
Arne Jacobsen egg table with three ant chairs, mfg. Fritz Hansen, Denmark. Label underneath. Table top has been restored since the lead photo was taken.
Category

Vintage 1960s Danish Mid-Century Modern Dining Room Sets

Materials

Teak

1953 Arne Jacobsen Tri-Leg Teak Ant Chairs Fritz Hansen Danish Cabinmodern
By Arne Jacobsen
Located in Washington, DC
Pair of rare 1st year of production FH3100 Myren Ant Chairs. Edge wear to both chairs all chips have been filled/restored, one chair has two replaced feet/glides, and one chair has t...
Category

Vintage 1950s Danish Scandinavian Modern Dining Room Chairs

Materials

Teak

Arne Jacobsen Anniversary Set, 3 "Ant" Chairs and Table
By Fritz Hansen, Arne Jacobsen
Located in Singapore, SG
Superb original Arne Jacobsen anniversary set. Originally designed in 1952 and produced in a limited number by Fritz Hansen to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the birth of Arne ...
Category

Early 2000s Danish Mid-Century Modern Chairs

Materials

Steel

1952, Arne Jacobsen, Original early set Ant Chairs
By Arne Jacobsen, Fritz Hansen
Located in IJmuiden, North Holland
A group of four very early version model #3100 ant chairs designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1952. Made of rosewood veneer on a tubular steel frame with three legs and the original metal c...
Category

Vintage 1950s Danish Mid-Century Modern Dining Room Chairs

Arne Jacobsen Design Three-Legged Egg Table with Three Ant Chairs All in Teak
By Arne Jacobsen, Fritz Hansen
Located in Montreal, QC
Mid -Century iconic Danish teak Egg table and teak Ant chairs by Arne Jacobsen. Made by Fritz Hansen, the table with maker’s partial logo on the underside, the chairs with the logo ...
Category

Vintage 1950s Danish Mid-Century Modern Dining Room Sets

1952, Arne Jacobsen, Ant Chairs, Repainted by Piece or as a Set
By Arne Jacobsen, Fritz Hansen
Located in IJmuiden, North Holland
Set of six Ants in black. The chairs are not all produced in the same year (see picture #9 and #10) and are (spray) painted in black but had other colors originally. They are in fair...
Category

Vintage 1950s Danish Mid-Century Modern Dining Room Chairs

Materials

Metal, Chrome

Arne Jacobsen "Ant" Side Chairs, Set of Four
By Arne Jacobsen
Located in Van Nuys, CA
Set of four Arne Jacobsen "Ant" bent plywood side chairs with chrome tubular base inspired by the Norman Cherner's "Cherner" chair.
Category

Vintage 1950s Danish Side Chairs

Materials

Chrome

Set of Six Teak Ant Dining Chairs 3100 by Arne Jacobsen for Fritz Hansen
By Arne Jacobsen, Fritz Hansen
Located in Berlin, DE
A set of six early ant chairs Mod. 3100 designed by Arne Jacobsen for Fritz Hansen in 1952 made in Denmark. All chairs are made of teak and are all a in good condition with little si...
Category

20th Century Danish Dining Room Chairs

Materials

Teak