Grete Prytz Kittelsen
About Grete Prytz Kittelsen
Born with an enamel spoon in her mouth
Grete Prytz Kittelsen was born in 1917 into a family known for its creativity and artisticness for generations. In 1945, she married the renowned Norwegian architect Arne Korsmo. The couple enjoyed a strong artistic partnership until their divorce in 1960. In 1949–50, they travelled to the US together, where Kittelsen studied at the Institute of Design in Chicago. Here, she became good friends with many of the great architects and designers of that day, such as Ray and Charles Eames, Mies Van De Rohe and Alvar Aalto. But two of the couple’s very closest friends were the world famous Danish architect, Jørn Utzon and his wife, Lis, with whom the Norwegian designer couple went on several study trips. Speaking about Grete Prytz Kittelsen, Jørn Utzon, among other things, said the following: “She is one of the 20th century’s most original and technically talented designers in Scandinavia.”
Several media have over the years hailed Grete Prytz Kittelsen as The Queen of Scandinavian design. And in the US, where Grete Prytz Kittelsen studied as a young woman, she was an established and highly regarded designer. In a portrait, American Vogue described her as a style icon with the words “One of the greatest Norwegian designers, famous internationally for her beautiful enamels”.
Grete Prytz Kittelsen died in 2010, aged 93. She died at her home designed by her former husband and architect Arne Korsmo on Planetvejen in Oslo. A house characterised by functionality and minimalism; visionary with sliding doors in glass and steel constructions.