The Wiener Werkstätte archives at the Museum für Angewandte Kunst in Vienna hold extensive records and drawings for this commission and the full details of the production are given in Neuwirth (op. cit). The majority of the service was made in 1919, with some additions being made in 1921 and 1928.
The industrial magnate and banker Otto Primavesi and his wife Eugenie (Mäda) became principle shareholders of the Wiener Werkstätte in 1914 after the bankruptcy of its original financier Fritz Wärndorfer and the liquidation of the company. At this time Primavesi had been known to Hoffmann for several years. In 1911 he commissioned Hoffmann to rebuild his bank at Olmutz in Moravia and create for him a country house at Winkelsdorf in Czeckoslovakia. Through Hoffmann the Primavesis met Gustav Klimt, who was to become a frequent visitor to their their home at Olmutz. They purchased several important examples of Klimt's work and commisioned Klimt to paint portraits of both Eugenie and their daughter (also Mäda).
Primavesi was appointed commercial/managing director of the re-formed Wiener Werkstätte in 1915 and retained this position until 1925. During this period there was considerable conflict between the ambitious general manager, Philip Häusler, whose aim was to increase the commercial output of the Wiener Werkstätte, Hoffmann, who resisted all attempts to develop such industrial links and Primavesi, who was seen by Häusler as 'an amateur'. In 1925 Primavesi became exasperated; he made a gift of the Wiener Werkstätte to his wife and transferred all his shareholding to her. Two months later the liquidation of the Wiener Werkstätte was announced. Otto Primavesi died in 1926.
For further details of the relationship between the Primavesi family, Josef Hoffmann and the artists of the Vienna Secession, see:
Hedwig Steiner, Gustav Klimts Bindung an Familie Primavesi in Olmutz, Mährisch-Schlesische Heimat, 1968, p.242-252.
See also: Hedwig Steiner, Anton Hanak, Munich 1969.
See also: Werner Schweiger. The Wiener Werkstätte, London, 1984, p. 112 et seq., Primavesi's involvement in the Wiener Werkstätte described.