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Colourful sketches of advertisements for a building's façade.
Alvar Aalto designed the advertisements of the first Turku Fair in 1929. He collaborated with architect Erik Bryggman, who was in charge of the exhibition structures. image: Alvar Aalto Foundation

This year’s Alvar Aalto Week highlights the influence of Alvar Aalto and Erik Bryggman in Turku and Paimio

The third annual Alvar Aalto Week lands jointly in Turku and Paimio. Held on the last week of August, the programme offers interesting visits and lectures as well as exhibitions and activities focusing on art, architecture and design. We have listed here some highlights from among a variety of events.

One of the highlights of the Alvar Aalto Week, organised by the two cities together with the Alvar Aalto Foundation, is the possibility of virtually experiencing the 1929 Turku Fair, for which Alvar Aalto (1898–1976) and Erik Bryggman (1891–1955) together designed the modern structures that attracted wide international interest at the time. The fair was regarded as the major manifesto of Functionalism in Finland. Alvar Aalto Foundation together with Bryggman Institute and Lundén Architecture Company have created an exhibition stand where history encounters the future.

In Paimio, the central feature of the Alvar Aalto Week is naturally the iconic Paimio Sanatorium. The masterpiece of Finnish white Modernism and total artwork of Alvar Aalto is a must-see as it is, but in addition, for the event a variety of themed tours and exhibitions have been produced to enlighten the sanatorium’s fascinating cultural history. To pick one, a dance performance Aika valossa (Time in Light) opens new perspectives on the architecture of the sanatorium and its surroundings.

The heritage of Alvar Aalto and Erik Bryggman, colleagues and contemporaries whose influence is visible both in Paimio and Turku, is prominently featured in the events organised during the week. A mini-seminar with international speakers explores the influence of Finnish modernism abroad. The seminar titled “International influence of Finnish Modernism” is organised by the Bryggman Institute and held on 30 August. English language tours to the most influential modernist buildings in Turku and surroundings, including works by Aalto, Bryggman and Pekka Pitkänen, are organised on 29–31 August.

The Alvar Aalto Week also offers something to the thirsty. Restaurant Bassi by the river Aura shakes architectural cocktails named after architects who have had an impact on the cityscape of Turku, such as Alvar Aalto and his predecessors Carl Ludwig Engel and Carlo Bassi. A nice way to relax after a full day of experiencing architecture!

Alvar Aalto Week
23 August – 1 September
Turku and Paimio

See the full programme here on Alvar Aalto Foundation’s website through this link.

Seminar: International influence of Finnish Modernism
30 August at 13:30–16:30
Kåren, Hämeenkatu 22, Turku

Explore the seminar and tour programme and register on Bryggman Foundation’s website through this link.

More on Alvar Aalto’s and Erik Bryggman’s works may be found at the Finnish Architecture Navigator.
Link here.