Alvar Aalto

(Hugo Alvar Henrik Aalto)

Alvar Aalto
Alvar Aalto
  • Born: February 3, 1898
  • Died: May 11, 1976
  • Nationality: Finnish
  • Profession: Architect

22

Quotes

0

Citations

3

Concepts

0

Videos

Hugo Alvar Henrik Aalto was a Finnish architect and designer. His work includes architecture, furniture, textiles and glassware, as well as sculptures and paintings, though he never regarded himself as an artist, seeing painting and sculpture as "branches of the tree whose trunk is architecture." Aalto's early career runs in parallel with the rapid economic growth and industrialization of Finland during the first half of the twentieth century and many of his clients were industrialists; among these were the Ahlström-Gullichsen family. The span of his career, from the 1920s to the 1970s, is reflected in the styles of his work, ranging from Nordic Classicism of the early work, to a rational International Style Modernism during the 1930s to a more organic modernist style from the 1940s onwards. What is typical for his entire career, however, is a concern for design as a Gesamtkunstwerk, a total work of art; whereby he – together with his first wife Aino Aalto – would design not just the building, but give special treatments to the interior surfaces and design furniture, lamps, and furnishings and glassware. His furniture designs are considered Scandinavian Modern, in the sense of a concern for materials, especially wood, and simplification but also technical experimentation, which led to him receiving patents for various manufacturing processes, such as bent wood. The Alvar Aalto Museum, designed by Aalto himself, is located in what is regarded as his home city Jyväskylä.

Quotes About
Author Quote
Quotes
Quote Topics Cited
Architecture belongs to culture, not to civilization.
Architecture is not merely national but clearly has local ties in that it is rooted in the earth.
Building art is a synthesis of life in materialised form. We should try to bring in under the same hat not a splintered way of thinking, but all in harmony together. Life ;Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
Even the smallest daily chore can be humanized with the harmony of culture.
Every one of my buildings begins with an Italian journey.
Form must have a content, and that content must be linked with nature. Nature
God created paper for the purpose of drawing architecture on it. Everything else is, at least for me, an abuse of paper. Religion & God
Human life is a combination of tragedy and comedy. The shapes and designs that surround us are the music accompanying this tragedy and this comedy. Life ;Music, Chants & Rapps
I do not write, I build.
I tell you, it is easier to build a grand opera or a city center than to build a personal house.
Just as it takes time for a speck of fish spawn to develop into a fully grown fish, so, too, we need time for everything that develops and crystallizes in the world of ideas. Architecture demands more of this time than other creative work. Time ;Work, Workers & The Labor Force
Nothing is as dangerous in architecture as dealing with separated problems. If we split life into separated problems we split the possibilities to make good building art. Life ;Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
Once I tried to make a standardization of staircases. Probably that is one of the oldest of the standardizations. Of course, we design new staircase steps every day in connection with all our houses, but a standardized step depends on the height of the buildings and on all kinds of things.
Our time is so specialised that we have people who know more and more or less and less. Time
The best standardisation committee in the world is nature herself, but in nature standardisation occurs mainly in connection with the smallest possible units: cells. The result is millions of flexible combinations in which one never encounters the stereotyped. Nature
The most difficult problems are naturally not involved in the search for forms for contemporary life. It is a question of working our way to forms behind which real human values lie. Life
The tubular steel chair is surely rational from technical and constructive points of view. It is light, suitable for mass production, and so on. But steel and chromium surfaces are not satisfactory from the human point of view.
The ultimate goal of the architect...is to create a paradise. Every house, every product of architecture... should be a fruit of our endeavour to build an earthly paradise for people.
The very essence of architecture consists of a variety and development reminiscent of natural organic life. This is the only true style in architecture. Life
We have almost a city has probably two or three hundred committees. Every committee is dealing with just one problem and has nothing to do with the other problems.
We should concentrate our work not only to a separated housing problem but housing involved in our daily work and all the other functions of the city. Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle ;Work, Workers & The Labor Force
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. Work, Workers & The Labor Force