At Maison & Objet in January 2015, Artek presented small furniture, lighting, and products from the abc collection. Referring to the alphabet of living, the abc collection comprises textiles, stationery and small objects that complement Artek’s furniture collection. Beautiful and functional, these objects bring joy to everyday life.
Artek exhibited the following products:
The H55 textile pattern, designed by Elissa Aalto, was introduced in a new colour. Architect Elissa Aalto was working as an assistant in Alvar Aalto’s office in 1955 when he was invited to design the Finnish housing section of the Helsingborg Exhibition in Sweden. One detail featured in the apartment was the H55 fabric, which was introduced in a white/red version.
From the archives, Artek also reintroduced Alvar Aalto’s Wall Drawer 114B. This charming and popular multipurpose piece of furniture has been used in a variety of ways since its introduction in 1936, for example, as a telephone table or a nightstand. From the same series of domestic helpers, the Coat Rack 109C and Mirror 192A and 192B were also reintroduced.
Two of Artek’s most iconic light fixtures were also presented. The light fixture A330S, better known as “Golden Bell”, was originally designed by Alvar Aalto for the renowned Savoy Restaurant in Helsinki in 1937. Made from one single piece of brass, the “Golden Bell” combines Aalto’s typical streamlined design with his characteristic manner of diffusing light. Also included was the recently launched pendant light TW003, designed in 1960 by Tapio Wirkkala, who would have been 100 years old in 2015. The iconic light was awarded with the Grand Prix at the Milan Triennale in 1960.
Other products included Alvar Aalto’s classic Stool 60 from 1933, in a newly interpreted version by Dutch designer Hella Jongerius. In 2014 Jongerius revisited the model, adding a new colour concept and stained wood to the icon.
Artek was founded in 1935 by four young idealists: Alvar and Aino Aalto, Maire Gullichsen, and Nils-Gustav Hahl. The business strategy of the company was “to sell furniture and to promote a modern culture of living by exhibitions and other educational means”. The founders of Artek advocated a new kind of environment for everyday life. They believed in a grand synthesis of the arts and wanted to make a difference in architecture and design as well as in town planning.
Today Artek is renowned as being one of the most innovative contributors to modern design, creating new paths at the intersection of design, architecture and art. The Artek collection comprises furniture, lighting and accessories by the Nordic masters Alvar Aalto, Ilmari Tapiovaara, Tapio Wirkkala, Eero Aarnio and Yrjö Kukkapuro. Artek also works with leading international architects, designers and artists, such as Shigeru Ban, Konstantin Grcic, Hella Jongerius, Harri Koskinen, Enzo Mari and Tobias Rehberger.
For all UK press enquiries regarding Vitra and Artek, please contact Caro Communications:
Lucy Price, Account Manager
Jeffrey Cheung, Account Director