The 1939 New York World’s Fair brought together composer Jean Sibelius and architect Alvar Aalto, at least in spirit, during a crucial episode in Finnish history. A recording of Sibelius’s stirring Andante Festivo was played inside Aalto’s labyrinthine pavilion: two symbols of a nation still confident under Russian threat. In this lecture we learn more about that Finnish architect, who designed not only impressive buildings, such as the Finlandia Hall, but also textiles, glassware and furniture.
Discover two very different urban development projects: a modernist approach in Le Havre and a contemporary approach in Nantes. Along the way we see some interesting projects in Rouen, Saint-Nazaire and Paris.
Some buildings are better as they get older – or as we get older?
With Alvar Aalto as a compass we travel through the endless forests and get back the feeling to come home to every classic: the works are beautifully preserved and make even more impressed than before.
The Ruhr was once the largest industrial region in Europe. There was massive coal mined and steel produced. In the eighties, the decline of the heavy industry was a fact, and most of the mining and steel workers were unemployed. The regional project IBA Emscher Park changed a lot for the Ruhr.
In Oslo we are led by an impressive series of works by Arne Korsmo and Sverre Fehn. In Stockholm we see masterpieces by Asplund, Lewerentz and Celsing, and in Uppsala unexpectedly an Aalto. We also discover recent work of Snohetta, Kristin Jarmund, Jensen & Skodvin, Jarmund & Vigsnaes and Henning Larsen.
The Danes and Swedes use the landscape to structure urban interventions. Whether newly designed squares, parks and spaces are tilted on a higher level by assigning objects a second layer of meaning.
Although it is essentially a Aalto trip, we have spotted a lot of interesting and impressive architecture, both from the period before and after and even contemporary.
In the summary of his extensive oeuvre 200 projects are mentioned, about 100 are built, for the most part public buildings.
The confrontation with this Berlin, this part of west island as in East Germany, is a shocking experience. Nowhere are the political contradictions so keenly felt as here. A feeling that each of us must experience to feel the relativity of force, as it is played so great on both sides of the barriers.