Modernism in dining design favors functionality over frivolous ornamentation. The Knoll dining collection embodies the Bauhaus and American Modern traditions: Florence Knoll Tables evoke rationality; Saarinen Dining Tables offer simple elegance; Platner Dining Tables embody craft; and Stromborg Tables exemplify color.
Our mid-century modern dining table materials range from environmentally sourced wood to high-quality marble, and from glass to a variety of laminates. Outdoor modern tables are offered in porcelain and vetro bianco, two highly weather-resistant options.
Florence Knoll’s rational and rectilinear surfaces to Eero Saarinen’s calculated curves echo the Modernist tradition. Knoll mid-century modern dining tables reflect functionality and adaptability in today’s modern world, delivering efficiency and pleasure. The rational design of Knoll modern dining tables offers coherence in a chaotic world, bringing order and beauty to one’s living space.
Dating to 1957, Eero Saarinen designed the Pedestal Collection out of a desire to “clear up the slum of legs” on the underside of typical modern chairs and tables. Saarinen, in his purist approach to architecture and interior design, sought the essential idea and reduced it to the most effective structural solution within an overall unified modern design.
Saarinen’s table design employed modern materials in graceful, organic shapes, which further strengthened the reputation and identity of Knoll as a modern furniture company. Known for being obsessed with revision, Saarinen took a sculptural approach to furniture design, building hundreds of models, honing in on the perfect curve, the right line, and the most pleasing proportions. Constantly pushing material and aesthetic boundaries, Saarinen expanded the modern vocabulary to include curvilinear and organically-inspired forms.
Four years later, Florence Knoll incorporated Saarinen’s curves into the Florence Knoll Table Desk, a modern conference table for the corporate interiors of post-war modern America. Florence Knoll’s Table Desk epitomizes Mies van der Rohe’s impact on her approach to design. Each detail has been endlessly refined to achieve simple, seemingly effortless beauty. The Florence Knoll Table Desk marries the elegantly curved table top with a structural and linear metal base. Florence Knoll’s choice of metal and varying surface tops embodies the synthesis of Modernist principles between American Modern and Bauhaus teachings.
The Florence Knoll Table Desk became such a successful modern office desk that it found itself in many dining rooms, proving that people really did enjoy and prefer modern objects in their personal spaces. The lack of ornamentation and the straightforward nature of these modern dining solutions were more functional and ultimately more desirable. Soon after, Florence Knoll designed a more rectilinear dining table that epitomizes the rational principles of the Modern aesthetic. The clean, sharp lines of the Florence Knoll Dining Table strongly parallel the vertical façade of Mies van der Rohe’s Seagram Building – a Modern icon.
Having worked with Eero Saarinen as a young architect, Warren Platner made his own notable modern contribution to Knoll in 1966 when he designed a collection of chairs and tables that strongly exemplified the Bauhaus traditions of craft.
The Platner Collection captures the “decorative, gentle and graceful” shapes that began to infiltrate the Modern vocabulary. He transformed steel wire into a sculptural furniture collection. The pieces are created by welding hundreds of curved, steel rods to circular frames, simultaneously serving as structure and simple ornamentation. While earlier modern designs by Knoll and Saarinen were devoid of any ornamentation, Modernism became more expressive in the 1960’s due to a shift in cultural values. Platner’s modern dining table collection successfully incorporates competing aesthetics while maintaining a high level of functionality and clarity.
With unity, ingenuity and attention to detail in both form and fabrication, the Platner Collection has become a design icon of the modern era.
After receiving a letter from Florence Knoll in which she complained about the lack of decent outdoor furniture that wouldn’t rust, Richard Schultz began working on an outdoor collection of mid-century modern dining tables and chairs. The intent was to create furniture that was both practical and aesthetically appropriate for Knoll. Durable, weather-resistant materials and new methods of construction meant less wear and limited maintenance in outdoor – or indoor – settings.
With a streamlined design and minimal ornamentation, Richard Schultz’s outdoor collection was celebrated as the first modernist outdoor furniture. To this day, the dining tables and chairs have become icons of modern design.
Similar in design to the Florence Knoll Dining Table and the 1966 Dining Table, Daniel Stromborg’s collection of modern dining tables adds a splash of color to the Knoll portfolio. The Stromborg Table Collection, designed for indoor and outdoor use, offers clean lines and a broad palette of top material and paint finishes that complement any environment. The signature X- and Y- shaped aluminum rails are offered in bright colors for a subtle but energetic accent.
The mid-century modern collection of dining tables embodies the simplicity and clarity typical of Stromborg’s predecessors. Stromborg gives functionality a touch of color, enriching any indoor or outdoor living space.