Artist Profile – Pierre Cronje
Pierre Cronje is a man I’ve long admired. A master craftsman, he’s made a name for himself not only in his home of South Africa, but internationally too as a skilled furniture maker and woodworker. With pieces in some of the world’s most famous interiors, I’m honoured to have carried some Pierre Cronje tables and chairs myself here at Snob.
The French and Ebony dining tables we have carried at Snob
Employing more than 140 artisans today, his fiercely original line of furniture is striking. Just look at some of these gorgeous pieces: Passionate about his land and its history, many Cronje pieces are based on 18th century designs of Cape Dutch Settlers. In fact Cronje started his business three decades ago as a furniture restorer. As demand for fine quality, handmade solid wood furniture grew, so did his business. Now with 140 artisans who have each apprenticed for two years to perfect their skills, the brand has a large and dedicated following. However, the line will never grow to the point of mass-production, on this Pierre Cronje is clear. Today Cronje specializes in custom work, adapting his range of more than 200 pieces to the specifications of his clients, be that sizing to a particular space, or building in of special functionality. He also creates bespoke pieces for his most exclusive clients. Many of these one-of-a-kind treasures have sculptural qualities and showcase master-craft skill in impeccably fine detail. One thing is certain: all Pierre Cronje furniture are the heirlooms of tomorrow.
The Bloukrans Dining Table
Cronje’s educational background is in civil engineering and computer science. But his heart lies in both national history and art. His engineering background means that he brings a unique aesthetic and clean lines to the range of modern furniture he has also created. Take for example the Bloukrans Dining Table which was inspired by his time working on the famous South African Bloukrans Bridge. All the hardwoods used in the building of his pieces are sourced from sustainable forests or are certified reclaimed. Cronje celebrates the tree from which the wood comes, even handcrafting the square wooden dowels and butterfly joints, so that these utility pieces heighten and beautify the designs. What do you think of these? Do you have a favourite?