Rud Thygesen (1932) and Johnny Sørensen (1944) both graduated from the Danish School of Arts, Crafts and Design in 1966. That same year they opened their own design studio.
When the Danish King Frederik IX shook hands with Thygesen and Sørensen in 1970 in thanks for their 70th birthday gift, it launched a new era in the lives of the two young furniture designers. Until then, they had only just managed to eke out a living from their design studio, a lifelong dream, but following the royal handshake and photos in illustrated weeklies, their exclusive furniture collections attracted everyone’s attention, and the fairytale about the “King’s Furniture” unfolded.
While still at school they established a co-operation with Magnus Olesen which in 1971 was expressed in the first models of a range of laminated furniture of which the mutual connection – both technologically and aesthetically – is shown in a stringent and functional design.
Since then Thygesen and Sørensen have created a large number of furniture series – mainly in laminated wood. They have contributed considerably to the development of furniture in laminated and moulded wood and have designed some of the most successful Danish furniture pieces. Furthermore they have design tubular steel furniture and worked with the design of textiles, lightings etc.
Their designs are purchased by among others the Danish Arts Foundation, the art and design museums in Oslo and Copnhagen, National Museum of Decorative Arts in Norway, Staatliches Museum für Angewandte Kunst in Cologne, Victoria and Albert Museum i London, Art Gallery and Museum, The Royal Pavillon in Brighton and by Museum of Modern Art in New York.