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Hugo Alvar Hendrick Aalto (1898-1976)

January 2nd 2009

Born in Finland and an early pioneer of Nordic Modernism, Higo married fellow designer Aino Marsio in 1924. They began by spending 5 years experimenting with the bending of plywood. This gave rise to the first wood framed cantilever chair model no 31. This style of chair is frequently seen as a conference and boardroom chair in many offices. This marked a new trend in the use of ;laminated woods and plywood and to a the foundation of a Company called Artek by Hugo and his wife. Artek still manufactures and sells some of these early designs today. One of his most memorable chair is the Paimio chair. Another wood framed cantilever chair designed to aid the recuperation of tuberculosis patients. This chair thought to be influenced by Marcel Bruer’s Wassily chair assisted the breathing of the patient due to the angle of the back. Hugo opposed the rides of modernism and mass production that emerged in the 1940’s preferring designs that were more natural and environmental than the cost efficient offerings that were beginning to rule the day.

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