AR. RUPALI BANSAL
I DO NOT WRITE
LIFE JOURNEYBorn Hugo Alvar Henrik Aalto
3 February 1898
Died 1May 1976 (aged 78)1
Awards RIBA Gold Medal
AIA Gold Medal
Buildings Paimio Sanatorium
Säynätsalo Town Hall
Projects Helsinki City Centre
Design Savoy Vase
• Hugo Alvar Henrik Aalto was born in Kuortane, Finland.
• His father, Johan Henrik Aalto, was a Finnish-speaking land-surveyor and his
mother, Selly Matilda was a Swedish-speaking postmistress.
• When Aalto was 5 years old, the family moved toAlajärvi, and from there
to Jyväskylä in Central Finland. Aalto studied at the Jyväskylä Lyceum
school, completing his basic education in 1916.
• In 1916 he then enrolled to study architecture at the Helsinki University of
Technology. His studies were interrupted by the Finnish Civil War, which he
• He built his first piece of architecture while still a student, a house for his
parents, at Alajärvi.
• Afterwards, he continued his education, graduating in 1921.
• Aalto's career spans the changes in style from (Nordic
Classicism) to purist International Style Modernism to a
more personal, synthetic and idiosyncratic Modernism.
• Aalto's wide field of design activity ranges from the
large scale of city planning and architecture to interior
design, furniture and glassware design and painting
• It has been estimated that during his entire career Aalto
designed over 500 individual buildings, approximately
300 of which were built, the vast majority of which are in
• He also has a few buildings in France, Germany, Italy
and the USA.
• The beauty of his work is hidden in his design approach of
Functionalism but with a strong connection to the organic
relationship between man, nature and buildings.
• He coordinated these three components and created a
synthesis of life in materialized form.
• He designed in very different scales – ranging from
buildings, town plans, furniture, glassware, jewellery
and other forms of art.
• His design philosophy was influenced by nature and
organic materials, unlike other furniture of the same
period with materials as tubular steel, which were
quite modern at the time.
• With his innovative designs and natural forms he
changed the course of design towards organic
ARCHITECTURAL SYLE: Nordic
• Discontinuous glazing on all four
sides at entrance level.
• This building houses a restaurant and
a coffee bar which supports the
• He employs various classical devices:
4.Cartouches to decorate
the stuccoes wall
GROUND FLOOR PLAN
It was a two-storey building situated on the corner of two
streets in the centre of the town, and with a café and
restaurant on the ground floor. From the street level one
entered an impressive entrance hall that led upstairs to the
auditorium floor comprising a theatre space and foyer. In
the basement floor spaces were reserved for, among other
things, a kitchen, storage and washing and toilet facilities.
Aalto also designed the lamps for the building as well as the
decorative paintings and part of the furniture.
• ARCHITECTURAL SYLE:
• Uses RCC frame with infill being an
insulating brick cavity wall which is
then rendered an painted white.
• Sun trapped balconies are
cantilevered from the tapering
• Exposed lift shaft on the external
• Free form cantilevered canopy.
• Orientation: south of the
balconies and the roof top
sundeck was determined by the
dedication to the supposed
“healing “ powers of the sun.
• West: doctors houses; North :
• Plan was meant to be functionally
zoned and biodynamical aligned
to the compass so that the
direction of each wing was
defined according to its
requirements for sunshine and
view. GROUND FLOOR PLAN
• A continuous sundeck that runs over the
patient wing is protected with RCC
canopy to reduce solar gain.
• Dining room was an enclosed mezzanine
suspended from steel hangers form
• It had a lot of natural
light due to double-
height windows, the
sun blinds outside
• Main staircase has
natural light which is
further enhanced by the
yellow color of the
• Each patient had their own wall
mounted cupboard and basin.
• Door handles designed to prevent coat
sleeves from being caught in them.
• Designed lamps that were placed out
of the patients line of vision.
Aalto also believed that bright colors made people
feel better and be more active. So the lobby was
treated with Bright yellow walls and floor tiles to
ARCHITECTURAL SYLE: Modernism
• The courtyard of the villa was inspired by the
organization of vernacular farmstead.
• The massing was inspired by the falling
waters by Frank Lloyd Wright.
• A – Dining room
• B – Sauna
• C – Living room
• D- Library
• E - Studio
• F - Staff
• G - Kitchen
• H- Restroom
• I – children play area
• J – Guest wing
• K – Children’s room
• L - Master bedroom
The interiors follow the grid of 2850 x 2850 m
GROUND FLOOR PLAN
FIRST FLOOR PLAN
Teak clad living room projects forward to
create shallow balconies that lead on to the
principle bedroom above
• Bedroom windows project out at an
angle to address the line of approach to
the house through the forest.
• The main entrance to the – the door is
approached under a two level canopy
supported by compound timber column
and screened by miniature forest of
Also design elements such as the pool and
the rubble masonry wall add to the aesthetic.
Screening by vertical poles help to differentiate the
To enter this inner sanctum, columns are made to
resemble tree trunks are located at certain points to
create the impression similar to that of emerging
through the fringes of a forest clearing.
• Baker house is a dormatory for the
Massachusetts Institute of
Technology,designed in 1946.
• Aalto was assisted by three finish
architects –veli paatela with his wife kaija
and olav hammarstrom ,in addition to
• It was named baker house in 1950 after
Everett moore BAKER , MIT’s dean of
students, who was killed in plane crash
"The site is located on a heavily-trafficked street along the Charles River. In order to avoid as
much as possible the disturbing view out onto this street, a curving plan form was chosen. By
this means, no room was oriented at right angles to the street and its traffic. An attempt to
make use of this phenomenon was made with the form of the building: the windows face
diagonally to the passing automobiles and thus afford a quieter environment for the person
within the room. The stairway system is housed in a paneled structure rising up the north side
of the building which allows an unobstructed view along its entire length from the lowest
• The stairway system is housed in a
paneled structure rising up the north side
of the building which allows an
unobstructed view along its entire length
from the lowest landing."
• The free fom of rooms were built
with ‘rustic’ bricks-indeed he went to
find the dark red reject bricks that
were rough textured and included
clinkers-but clad the orthogonal main
common room in limestone
• The sets of rooms can be seen as an illustration of
what aalto might mean by ‘flexible standardisation’.
• Each cell is essentially identical, but because of the
shaped curve on plan 22 different room shapes are
created on a typical floor of 43 rooms.
• The ground floor social area was ‘ORGANIC’,and
related to the landscape in both geometry and use of
• The lower floor is lit by virpuri like rooflights while
the upper level has nearly contionous views towards
• Columns on the ground floor are simple plastered
cylinder but on the upper level their connection with
the trees beyond is emphasised by a splayed shape
and timber cladding.
function auditorium, library, university
contributed by gonzalezdioslydia
Alvar Aalto designed the campus for the
Otaniemi Technical University in Espoo,
Finland between 1949 and 1966.
Aalto's buildings for the university include
the main building, the library, the shopping
centre, and the water tower, with a crescent-
shaped auditorium at the center
OTANIEMI TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY
• "The focal point of this
university centre is the
auditorium building with two
large halls (also intended for
• All tuition rooms are in
adjacent buildings grouped
about small internal courts, and
here are also found the smaller
lecture-rooms, laboratories and
• The centre is divided into three
principal departments: general,
geodetic and architectural.
• The chief materials are dark
red brick, black granite and
Outdoor lights by Aalto
The lamp-posts in the Otaniemi campus
area have also been designed by Aalto.
There are three types of lamp-posts: ones
with a curved cover, ones with a straight
cover, and ones with no cover at all. The
cover reflects the light indirectly, and does
not significantly affect the amount of light,
but has above all a decorative function.
Its staircase-like ascending rows of
windows suggest from the outside
4. Heating plant
The campus-based heating plant building designed
by Alvar Aalto was realized at the outset of the
1960s. The most visible section of the building is the
cube-shaped power plant, whose internal engineering
is exposed to view from a glass façade. The roof of
the structure and its linked projection are made of
copper. The laboratories, offices and control centre
are situated in the lower rectangular-shaped
premises. Address: Otakaari 6
1 This building, completed in 1966, is the only
dormitory on campus designed by Alvar Aalto. The
four-storey, V-shaped edifice has over 200 rooms,
and originally it functioned during the summers as a
hotel. The southeast façade on the dormitory’s east
wing undulates and the layout resembles a fan, which
is reminiscent of Aalto’s previously designed MIT
dormitory in Boston.
2. The Library
The library building designed by Alvar Aalto was
completed in 1969. It is Finland’s oldest and largest
library in the technical field. The structure is clearly
connected with the former main building next to it
with respect to the materials and contours of the
façades. The furnishings in the interiors, designed by
Aalto and Elin Törnudd, are a fixed part of the whole:
a large number of the shelves, tables, counters and
lamps are original items
Otahalli Sports Centre, designed by Alvar Aalto,
was completed for the 1952 Olympics. The
building’s larger hall was at one time the country’s
largest structure of its kind, and the span between its
wooden rafters is 45 metres. Otaniemi’s sports centre
boasts a grassy field, grounds for track and field, a
skating area, two street basketball courts, three tennis
courts and a jogging track.
In his campus plan, Alvar Aalto placed the
School of Science and Technology main
building in a very visible, central location.
Situated on one of the seven hills of the area,
at the end of a row of lime trees, it is sure to
be seen; its landmark feature, the striking
amphitheatre-like auditorium is particularly
Otahalli (sports complex)
Architectural style: Modern
• The Finlandia Hall is a congress and
event venue in the centre of Helsinki
on the Töölönlahti Bay.
• Finlandia Hall was designed in 1962 and
built between 1967 and 72. The plan for
the Congress Wing was drawn up in
1970 and it was constructed between
1973 and 75. With the completion of
the first stage of his overall project.
• The main feature of the Finlandia Hall building
is a tower like section with a sloping roof.
Alvar Aalto’s idea behind the design was that a
high empty space would provide better
• A suspended ceiling hides the space to the
audience but it allows the creation of the same
deep post-echo as tall church towers.
• Aalto used marble in both indoor and outdoor
surfaces as a contrast to black granite. For
Aalto, marble was a tie to the Mediterranean
culture, which he wanted to bring to Finland.
• The design of each lamp, piece of furniture,
panel, flooring material and decorative board
reflects the mature approach resulting from
Aalto’s long career as an architect.
• The large asymmetrical auditorium is virtually
free of right angles, yet still tightly controlled,
with naturally harmonious and acoustically
influenced wall reliefs and bold balcony
outlines. In many respects, it is a simplified
version of Aalto's most magnificent auditorium,
in the Great Opera House in Essen.
The National Museum building on the
other side of the street seems to rise from
the edge of the Finlandia Hall tower. The
effect is created by a black trapezium on
the white marble surface of the Finlandia
Hall tower. The trapezium has been
measured to fit the rising tower of
the National Museum when the Finlandia
Hall is viewed from the eastern shore of
the Töölönlahti Bay. Aalto liked to
create optical illusions
• Main Auditorium (seats 1700)
• Helsinki Hall (seats 340)
• Terrace Hall (seats 250)
• Elissa Hall (seats 130)
• Aurora Hall (seats 894)
• Veranda (seats 1700)
• Finlandia Restaurant
• Cafe Veranda
• Galleria Veranda.
• The Main Auditorium has been a popular venue
for meetings, congresses, festivities, concerts
and events from the very beginning.
• The Auditorium seats 1700 people, 1200 in the
stalls and 500 in the balcony.
• The floor is oak parquet and the blue sections of
the wall are Finnish birch.
• The stage is 14 metres wide. It consists of
several modular platforms. In the middle, there
is an elevator to the storage rooms located on
two floors underneath the stage.
Piazza is a large foyer that is full of natural light The
colours are subdued and quiet. The floor or the foyer
is covered with high-quality English wool carpeting.
The Congress Wing was completed in 1975. The special
feature of the Congress Wing is the “waves” of the
facade that give the building unique beauty and
vivacity. The outer walls of the Wing are not direct.
They curve, following the form of the terrain. On the
one hand, Aalto wanted to save most of the trees on
the site, but on the other hand, he wanted to avoid the
monotony of direct walls. The Congress Wing
contains convertible halls A, B and C, as well as
several (total 13) smaller meeting rooms.
The Finlandia Restaurant consists of three dining rooms
separated by movable walls. As a single space, the
restaurant seats 380 people and accommodates a
cocktail party for 650 people.
HOUSE OF CULTURE
RIOLA PARISH CHURCH
Headquarters for the White Guards
OTHER WORKS OF ALVAR
His design concepts were organic and using the human
His buildings and chairs were first prompted by the user.
The seats and handles were moulded to the human form.
Of all architectural furniture, his is the closest to
Alvar Aalto designed laminated timber furniture.
He saw that tubular steel lacked human qualities.
He used local Birchwood as a substitution for steel tubing.
CONCEPT OF FURNITURE
He concluded that standardization and
mass production could not be sustained in
Finland's small economy.
His chairs were the result of great study and
investigation into, posture, laminated
wood, aesthetic considerations and
efficient mechanical methods of mass
Alvar Aalto’s furniture included:
The Paimio Chair
The Viipuri Stacking Stools
Paimio Chair is said to have been
influenced by the curved contours of the
It is one of the most elegant modern chairs.
The frame is laminated birch bent into a
closed curve with solid birch cross-rails.
The seat is molded from one piece of birch
The springy plywood fixed on a closed
frame was Aalto’s brainstorm for making a
wooden chair “soft”.
The Paimio Chair is constructed from both
two dimensional molded plywood and
The curves are made by clamping layers of
veneer and glue over a form to achieve the
desired curved shapes.
It was supported by cantilevered continuous arm and leg frame of laminated
Birch plywood steam bent in the shape of a "C" and had horizontal braces to the
The frame was
thicker from the
front of the seat
down as there was
more stress on the
He constructed the
frame with 7 layers
of lamination and
less for the arms
and back as they
VIIPURI STACKING STOOLS
They then take up a minimal
storage space so are ideal for
schools, meeting rooms or
They were available in children
and adult sizes.
The legs were varnished natural
Birch timber and the seats were
made from natural Birch timber,
primary and white laminates.
The Viipuri collection of furniture
complemented Aalto's forward thinking
The stacking stool - this was made up of
only four wooden parts, three Aalto Legs
and a round seat.
These three legged stools are versatile
The stack ability means that they are ideal
for large gathering areas with small
The legs were attached to the seat at 120
degree angles which meant they could
interlock and stack easily.
• A Cantilever chair is a chair whose
seating and framework are not
supported by the typical
arrangement of 4 legs.
• Instead is held erect and aloft by a
single leg or legs that are attached
to one end of a chair’s seat and
bent in an L SHAPE.
• Otherwise known as the
Cantilever chair no.31; Made
of Bent laminated and solid birch
frame with bent plywood seat
section; has a more subtle curved