WHOSE MODERNISM? 40 international perspectives on modernism @ Alvar Aalto Museum

Have you already applied for your free virtual ticket? The 5. Alvar Aalto Researchers’ Network Seminar will be streamed from the Aalto2 Museum Centre in Jyväskylä on 14.–15.6.2023, in the presence of a live audience. Everyone who registers by 15.6. will automatically be entered for a prize draw, the main prize in which is an Artek stool, while ten other lucky people will receive a ticket allowing them entry to the new Aalto2 Museum Centre. Register here.

New events in Finnish in the seminar programme! The Aalto2 Museum Center is open to the public on Wednesday 14.6. at 17:00 for two special presentations in Finnish. A general lecture in Finnish: Antti Tevajärvi, from Artek 2nd Cycle, tells about the decades of the iconic 90 years old Artek stool. The public lecture will be followed by a panel discussion: “Cultural tourism: Elitism, popular education or democratization of the arts?” The speakers are Heikki Hanka from the University of Jyväskylä, Olli-Paavo Koponen from the University of Tampere, Tommi Lindh from the Alvar Aalto Foundation, and Susanne Rasmus from Visit Jyväskylä Region.

Two days and three central themes. The keynote speaker for Wednesday’s Intent theme is the internationally renowned American architectural historian, critic and teacher, Joan Ockman. Authorship questions will be debated on Thursday morning. The keynote speaker that day is Ruth Verde Zein, a respected Brazilian architect and professor of architecture and design from Sao Paolo. Thursday afternoon’s Legacy theme will be led by international award-winning Finnish film director Klaus Härö.The seminar includes a total of 40 unique presentations from around the world. Moderators are Aleksi Lohtaja, George Michelin and Scott W. Wall. Register now for free access to the English-language virtual event or come and listen live to the presenters – there is still a limited number of tickets on sale for the Aalto2 Museum Centre event.

The 5. Alvar Aalto Researchers’ Network Seminar – Whose Modernism? gives a voice to researchers, students and others interested in the modernism. The presentations of recent Aalto research include, for instance, examinations of Aalto’s Säynätsalo Town Hall as a complete work of art, the industrial heritage of the Toppila pulp mill. Also examined are the architectural works of, among others, Aarne Ervi, Timo Penttilä, Walter Gropius and Mies van der Rohe. The presentations chart both European modernism and the legacy of modern architecture on different continents – as far as Asia, Africa and South America. Friends of Alvar Aalto, modern architecture, art history and culture are welcome on 14.-15.6.2023 to the Aalto2 Museum Centre in Jyväskylä, either live or virtually. The accompanying programme includes, for instance, separate guided tours to the exhibitions of the Aalto2 Museum Centre and the university campus.

The event location, the Aalto2, is a new meeting place for architecture, design and cultural heritage. It consists of two buildings designed by Alvar Aalto – the Alvar Aalto Museum (1971–73) and the Museum of Central Finland (1956–61, 1991) – together with a new extension, which is being built to connect them (A-Konsultit, 2023). The City of Jyväskylä is the main partner of the event. Other partners are Aalto University, Artek, the Cumulus Association, ICOMOS Finland, the Finnish Heritage Agency, and the Museum of Finnish Architecture.

What researcher network?
The Alvar Aalto Researchers’ Network serves as a discussion channel and a builder of connections between international Alvar Aalto researchers. Through the network, topics of interest to Aalto research are brought to the fore. The Alvar Aalto Academy, which is part of the Alvar Aalto Foundation, is responsible for organising the network’s events.

Join the international Alvar Aalto Researchers’ Network Facebook group.

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5. Alvar Aalto Researchers’ Network Seminar – Whose Modernism?
Time: 14.–15.6.2023
Place: Aalto2 Museum Centre, Alvar Aalto katu 7, Jyväskylä

Basic ticket €180
Student ticket €50
Virtual €0 (free admission)
Registration and tickets here.

Further reading:
Alvar Aalto Foundation
The Alvar Aalto 125 anniversary year
Aalto2 Museum Centre

Further information:
Nina Heikkonen
Programme manager, Alvar Aalto Foundation
+358 44 500 1257

Aila Svenskberg
Communications, Editor, Alvar Aalto Foundation
+358 40 659 1930


Further information: 
Alvar Aalto Foundation
Tommi Lindh, Managing Director
+358 44 562 1625


Top picture:
Aalto2 Museum Centre. Photo Maija Holma © Alvar Aalto Foundation.

This year marks the 125th anniversary of the birth of Alvar Aalto (1898−1976). The architects and pioneers of modern design Alvar, Aino and Elissa Aalto made exceptionally rich and varied careers for themselves in Finland and abroad. During the year, the Alvar Aalto Foundation – along with its partners in collaboration – will be putting the spotlight on the story of Alvar Aalto’s architect’s office (1923−1994) and on the ideas that influenced its work, ideas that are still relevant today.


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