Who is Alvar Aalto? – 10 things you may not know about Alvar Aalto
- Alvar Aalto’s, the notable Finnish Architect was born on this day, 3rd February, in 1898.
- It can be seen, on reflection of Aalto’s lifelong work, that his work represented a GESAMTKUNSTWERK – The German word meaning a comprehensive work. He was involved in all elements of his work, from foundations to interiors of a building.
- In 1924, he married young Architect Aino Mandelin, who began to work alongside him.
- Aalto’s wide range of design, spanned from large scale city planning, Architecture, Interior Design, Furniture, glassware design, painting and sculpture.
- In 1941, he was invited to become visiting Professor at MIT in the USA.
- During WWII, while abroad in the USA, he encouraged his students to design low-cost, small-scale housing, that was to be use in the re-construction of war-torn Finland.
- After experimentation with materials for many years, he invented a new form of laminated bent plywood for furniture in 1932.
- Aalto’s furniture design was exhibited in London in 1935, where he got so much international interest that he, along with his wife and 2 colleagues, founded furniture company ARTEK, still thriving today in modern Finland.
- Aalto, through his expert design and experimentation with materials, was influential in developing the concept of good, affordable, functional design, most importantly for everyday use.
- Aalto was of the one the first Architects to master modern design, outside of Germany, France and the Netherlands.
“We should work for simple, good, undecorated things….but things which are in harmony with the human being and organically suited to the little man in the street.” Alvar Aalto, speech in London 1957.