The work of Finnish interior architect and furniture designer Yrjö Kukkapuro will get a new home as part of the Artek Collection. The partnership gives Kukkapuro’s furniture an even broader global distribution network, and the solid support of Artek’s marketing. The first goal of the collaboration between Artek and Kukkapuro is to re-launch the internationally acclaimed Karuselli chair and ottoman designed by Kukkapuro in 1964.
Artek CEO Mirkku Kullberg said: “Artek is the perfect company for Yrjö Kukkapuro’s iconic design. We have an obligation and responsibility to ensure that Yrjö Kukkapuro has a partner worthy of his expertise and talent. We are particularly pleased with the smooth launch of the partnership, and we are certain Yrjö Kukkapuro’s furniture is a complement to our portfolio of products by Alvar Aalto, Ilmari Tapiovaara and Artek Studio.”
Yrjö Kukkapuro in his ateljé. Photo: Veikko Kähkönen
Karuselli is one of the most famous lounge chairs internationally. Kukkapuro developed the fibreglass chair from the 1950s up to 1964, when Karuselli finally received its famous shape. The international launch of the chair was at the Cologne Furniture Fair in 1965.
The form of Karuselli was the result of extensive experimentation. Kukkapuro spent four years sculpting the chair – searching for the right dimensions, and initially using himself as yardstick. That the chair is ergonomically based on the shape and proportions of the body makes Karuselli particularly comfortable. The final result also demonstrates how the choice of material was dictated by form and function, whilst also respecting the material’s intrinsic properties.
Born in Viipuri in 1933, Yrjö Kukkapuro is one of the internationally most prestigious and successful Finnish designers. He graduated as interior architect from the Institute of Industrial Arts in Helsinki in 1958, and founded his own design office, Studio Kukkapuro, in 1959. A renowned award-winning designer, Kukkapuro worked as a teacher, professor and rector from the 1960s to the 1990s. He has work in the permanent collections of several museums, including the Museum of Modern Art MoMA in New York, Victoria & Albert in London, Röhsska Museum in Gothenburg, National Museum of Art in Stockholm, and the Vitra Design Museum in Germany. Kukkapuro has exhibited his work in dozens of solo and group shows across the world.
Yrjö Kukkapuro lives and works in Kauniainen with his wife, graphic artist Irmeli Kukkapuro.
In the spirit of its radical founders, Artek remains in the vanguard in the search for future paths within and between the disciplines of design, architecture and art.
Artek has been a forerunner of conscientious design thinking since 1935. The cornerstones of the company’s strategy are ethics, aesthetics and ecology. In Artek, this translates into high quality, timeless icons and tomorrow’s archetypes of humane design. The core of the Artek’s product range consists of furniture and lighting pieces by Alvar Aalto and the furniture collection designed by Ilmari Tapiovaara. With its current portfolio strategy, Artek is extending the range of its collections to respond to ever growing demand.
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