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a+u 2023:04 Feature: Alvar Aalto Library Landscapes

a+u 2023:04

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English + Japanese / 176 Pages / 219 x 292 mm / 600 g

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Content

a+u’s April issue features libraries by Finnish architect Alvar Aalto. Vyborg Library (then Viipuri Library), which took 7 years to complete after the project started in 1927, was designed by Aalto during a crucial period in his career – the moment when he broke away from classicism to pursue his own architectural methodology. Throughout the time, Aalto referenced works from his predecessors, and gradually developed a unique design language that would characterize his subsequent work – sunken spaces, use of natural materials, undulating lines, and cylindrical skylights. After the completion of Vyborg Library, and Paimio Sanatorium from 2 years earlier, Aalto began to gain international recognition. Following a+u 21:03 featuring Aalto’s residential work, this issue presents 10 public libraries by the architect from the 1920s to 1970s, alongside photographs by Jari Jetsonen and texts by Sirkkaliisa Jetsonen. The process of designing Vyborg Library led Aalto to discover “fantastic mountain landscapes” and create valley depressions as spaces for people to gather and read, surrounded by stepped terraces of bookshelves, with natural light filling the space, forming a library landscape that, after various renovations, continues to bring knowledge and people together to this day. (a+u)

Essay:
Library Landscapes
Sirkkaliisa Jetsonen

Vyborg Library

Woodberry Poetry Room Library, Harvard University

Säynätsalo Library

Aalto Library, University of Jyväskylä

Wolfsburg Cultural Center Library

Aalto library in Seinäjoki

Rovaniemi City Library

Nordic House Library

Aalto University Learning Center

Library at the Mount Angel Abbey

Result Announcement:
Shinkenchiku Residential Design Competition 2022