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A black and white photograph of a library's reading room. In the middle a large stairway leads to the lower floor. Walls are covered with bookshelves.
The reading room at the Viipuri Library designed by Alvar Aalto. photo: Gustav Weilin / Alvar Aalto Museum

Mind-Building in Vyborg: Permanence and change in public library architecture on 16 February

17.00–18.30 EET
18.00–19.30 MSK

Language: English, simultaneous interpretation in Russian
Online discussion (link)

The story of public libraries has a long history, and even the current modern public library is based on over 100-year-old ideals. The Mind-Building exhibition tells a story about the development of Finnish public library architecture from the early 20th century to the turn of the 2020s.

What is the hard core of good library architecture? How have the internationally renowned masterpieces such as the almost 90 years old Vyborg library by Alvar and Aino Aalto stood the test of time? What is expected of a library today and how do libraries with architectural heritage value respond to new, ever-growing demands?

The curator of the exhibition Anni Vartola will conduct an online discussion on the architecture of public libraries with Laura Berger, PhD, postdoctoral researcher who wrote her dissertation on the Vyborg Library, Tommi Lindh, CEO of the Alvar Aalto Foundation, and Tapani Mustonen, restauration architect of the Vyborg Library.

The event begins with a virtual visit to the Mind-Building exhibition which is open at the Aalto Library in Vyborg from 2 February to 10 April 2022. More information about the exhibition in this link (opens in a new window).

The event is free of charge and will be streamed on the Finnish institute in St. Petersburg´s Youtube channel. 

Organised by Archinfo Finland, Finnish Institute in St. Petersburg and Aalto Library in Vyborg with the support of the Ministry of Education and Culture in Finland.