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Although its origins are uncertain, furniture resembling the modern desk seems to have been used since the Medieval period for activities such as writing and reading. Over the years, these desks have evolved to fit different purposes, featuring today in workplaces, schools and homes. Early desk designs included basic features such as drawers and shelves for storage; today, the desk must include a wider range of elements which it suitable for computers, such as a keyboard tray, cable hole etc. Larger homes may include an office, in which the desk can be the central piece. A popular antique example is the leather-top pedestal desk, crafted from opulents woods such as walnut or mahogany. Mid-century Scandinavian designs are also highly-sought after, having been made typically from teak. Modern pieces are commonly found in glass, metal or plastic.

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Iconic design at Sotheby's France

On 24th May, Sotheby's France will hold their dedicated design auction which features ceramics by Georges Jouve, Alberto and Diego Giacometti's creations, works by leading architects Pierre Chareau, Jean Prouvé and Claude Parent as well as many other Art Déco pieces, bronze animal sculptures and contemporary works.