alvar aalto

there are many things to admire about alvar aalto. he's considered the father of modern architecture & design in northern europe, he's finnish, he was featured on the last version of the finnish mark (before the euro took over), he received several gold medals & international honors for his works during his lifetime, and his architecture & designs are incredible, ground-breaking beauties with much influence still today. he died in 1976 in helsinki.

(auditorium of the once viipuri municipal library, when it was still part of finland, is now the vyborg library in russia. it was famous for its unorthodox wave-like ceiling, sunken reading wells & cylindrical skylights. it was built in 1935 & is under restoration right now.the 3-legged, bent birch stools shown here are another lasting legacy design of aalto's)

(the aalto theater opera house in germany - designed originally in 1959, was opened in 1988. also the showplace of the essen ballet, it has elegant & modern harmonious lines. aalto's original plans were followed closesly even though it was built 10 years after his death & 30 years after he actually designed it. this shows the lasting quality of his talent)

(the landmark auditorium of the helsinki university of technology ~ the inside features the main auditoriums for the university while the outside can be used as an amphitheater for plays & other activities. completed in 1966)

(completed in 1970, this is an interior shot of the largest skylight over a circulation & study area in the mt.angel abbey library in mt.angel (st.benedict) oregon. i've never seen it in person even though i grew up in oregon. maybe my next visit home can include a trip here! )

(the north jutland museum was completed in 1972 in denmark. it's special features include its flexibility ~ mobile partition wall systems can transform the character depending on the requirements of individual exhibitions; and the unique use of natural light, which has helped to make the building world famous)

(the savoy vase is also known as the aalto vase ~ reflecting his organic architectural forms. manufactured by iitalia)

(this photo is taken at the moma in nyc, and shows several of aalto's famous paimio chairs. they were designed for his famous 1929 building, the paimio sanitorium in finland. the degree of bending of the wood for his design was a technological innovation at the time. aalto furniture is manufactured by artek, which aalto co-founded)

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