The exhibition, presented in collaboration with the Alvar Aalto Foundation in Finland, sets on display over 70 original works by the renowned Finnish architects Alvar Aalto (1898–1976) and Elissa Aalto (1922–1994) and their practice.
Spanning drawings from the 1950s, when Alvar Aalto was summoned to contribute to the vast (re)construction efforts that followed the Second World War, to the 1980s, when Elissa Aalto boldly brought to completion major projects that were left unfinished upon her husband’s death in 1976, the exhibition features original drawings of the office’s fourteen projects in Germany, both realised and unrealised. The six realised projects consist of three dyads: one pair each of churches, apartment blocks, and cultural buildings. The eight unrealised plans, in turn, encompass major public programmes – town halls, civic centres, master plans and commercial office buildings.
The drawings document the relationship that Alvar Aalto maintained with Germany and German architecture from his youth until his death, a relationship that was continued by Elissa Aalto. From the late 1940s and early 1950s onwards, Studio Aalto was celebrated in Germany as a “human” exception to an otherwise rather mechanised, doctrinaire modernism.
The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue. The exhibition is curated by Dr Sofia Singler, Research Fellow from University of Cambridge, Timo Riekko, Senior Curator of Alvar Aalto Foundation, and Nadejda Bartels, Director of Tchoban Foundation.