A 22in (57cm) long laminated wooden ‘Leaf Dish’ designed by the Finnish designer Tapio Wirkkala (1915-85), estimated at €1200-1500, turned out to be the top lot of the summer Design sale held by Munich’s Quittenbaum.
In the 1950s Wirkkala was fascinated by
nature's form in his native Finland and created a variety of
objects in the form of melting ice, mushrooms and leaves. His
so-called leaf dishes, made in glass or veneered plywood, were
particularly popular and a commercial success.
The one that Quittenbaum had to offer was
manufactured by Soinne & Kni in Helsinki, but not signed by the
designer, which accounted for the lowish estimate.
It had, however, been bought by the
consignor's family in Milan in 1954, presumably at the city's
Numerous international bidders recognised
the historical importance of a Wirkkala original from this era and
upped the price to €31,000 (£24,370) at the sale on June 27.
The buyer's premium was 19.5%.