Welcome to Artek in Milan

Artek at Salone Internazionale del Mobile, Milan
Artek at Superstudio Pił, April 13-18, Open 10am - 10pm
Via Tortona 27, 20144 Milano
Press preview: Tuesday April 12, 3pm - 7pm

New selection 2005 by Tom Dixon

In Milan Artek introduces a fresh view of its classic Alvar Aalto collection. Tom Dixon has acquainted himself with Artek's history and classic products. The meeting of new and old iconic objects, the contrast between the pleasantly worn-out, still in active use classic from 70 years ago and the same product manufactured today, fascinates Dixon. The past years have witnessed an increasing worldwide interest towards Artek products. In international auctions around the world, collectors have searched for original modernist colors, black and petrol blue, that haven't been in production for decades. To celebrate Artek's 70th anniversary, the lacquered vintage color, petrol blue from the 1930s, is making a comeback.

The clean-lined design classics are now strikingly petrol blue and dressed in bold new upholstery fabrics. A new broader range of upholstery fabrics is also being introduced. Warm oak is brought back as an alternative to the characteristically light birch wood. Sophisticated oak is available in tables, chairs and stools. A long awaited addition to the assortment, Artek brings back bedroom furniture. The line includes beds, drawers and desks; all manufactured using carefully selected Finnish oak. The makeup table, an old favorite, is an especially intriguing addition to the classic Artek collection.

Artek also introduces trendy new seasonal colors, as limited editions of special products. A limited edition fluorescent orange stool 60 is only available in Milan.

New management leads Artek into the future

Artek continues a dynamic development phase with its new creative director Tom Dixon, currently one the UK's most influential designers. After the announcement of the collaboration between Artek and Dixon in June 2005, there has been extensive interest in the international media towards the new Artek strategy. Dixon envisions:

"Artek, an extraordinary survivor of the most tumultuous and exciting times of the last century, this company is unique in this industry. Amazingly, this series of furniture - now in its seventieth year still looks as fresh as when it was created. This heritage is here, of course to be protected, but more than that, we hope that it will now also provide a platform for some more radical innovation, creativity and new ideas."
New Managing Director Mirkku Kullberg was appointed April 1st 2005. Kullberg is known for successfully turning around Finnish fashion brand Nanso and developing the exports of Finnish design fur.

Mirkku Kullberg says, "Nothing old is ever reborn, but neither does it totally disappear. And that which has once been, will always reappear in a new form." This old quote by Alvar Aalto has been a source of inspiration for me. Artek's founders drew up a brave manifesto when they started the company in 1935. This manifesto, embracing art and technology, will reappear in the form of exciting new products in the coming years".

For Artek, the new management means a big step forward in renewing itself as a future-oriented international design brand.

ARTEK oy ab
Mirkku Kullberg
Managing Director

About Artek
Four young Finns, led by the visionary modern architect Alvar Aalto, founded Artek in 1935. Aalto, who began designing furnishings as a natural and important extension of his architectural thinking and success, created his first furniture in 1931-32 for the tuberculosis sanatorium at Paimio. This proved to be his international breakthrough. Artek was set up in 1935 to market Aalto's furniture, lamps and textiles and its focus, from day one, has been on international markets. The four founding shareholders, Alvar and Aino Aalto, Maire Gullichsen and Nils-Gustav Hahl, originally owned the company. Since 1994, Artek has been fully owned by Proventus. Since 2004 Artek is fully owned by Art & Technology design group, founded by Proventus and the Tom Dixon company. CEO David Begg leads Art & Technology.

Tom Dixon
Tom Dixon is one of the UK's best known and respected product and interior designers. He has worked with a large number of international design companies, such as Cappellini and Moroso. His work is exhibited in permanent collections throughout the world. Together with David Begg, Tom Dixon founded the furniture and interiors brand Tom Dixon in 2001. Since its inception it has produced a large range of innovative contemporary furniture, lighting and home wares. Artek and Tom Dixon started collaborating in June 2004.

Mirkku Kullberg
Artek's new Managing Director, Mirkku Kullberg has extensive experience in turning around marketing-led companies and helping them grow. Previously, she was brand director at the Finnish fashion company Nanso. Over the past three years Ms Kullberg has been instrumental in making Nanso into an internationally recognized design label through the introduction of new designers and the launch of innovative new collections. Previously Ms Kullberg was Managing Director of Grunstein, a high-design fur company. She was appointed to turn the company around and following a successful redevelopment program, Grunstein was sold to Marimekko.


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