Finnish designer Alvar Aalto enjoyed an exceptionally varied career as both an architect and a designer. From his early architectural work of the 1930s as a pioneer of Modernism, his catalogue of work includes some of the most iconic designs of the Twentieth Century. Consistently engaging the principals of user-friendly and functional design, his visual vernacular became identified by organic forms and natural materials.
Throughout the 1930s, the revered designer and architect, developed a significant collection of decorative objects including vases and bowls with varying forms for submission in the Paris and New York world fairs. Compelled by his passion for glass, Aalto was consistently searching for innovative ways to work with the material.
One of the most successful designs from this period was a vase known simply as ‘3032’. Adopting a rounder and softer visual language, with an organic shape inspired by the undulating waves of the Baltic Sea that surrounds his native Finland.
Reinventing a classic design
An iconic design from one of the world’s most respected architects and designers, Iittala have relaunched the 3032 vase collection in a brand-new colour for this year. Linen encapsulates a natural aesthetic, in line with the elements that so deeply influenced Aalto’s work.
After re-discovering the design in Aalto’s archives, Iittala began to produce the vase with the same craftsmanship and technique as the original. Each individual vase is mouth-blown at the Iittala Glass Factory in Finland according to Aalto’s drawings, making every one unique with a slightly different shape from the next.
Iittala's Annual Colour | Linen
Taking inspiration from natural flax fields, Iittala’s annual colour for 2020, "Linen" was crafted from a unique combination of pigments and features a high natural lustre, highlighting the sculptural form of the vase.
The colour is infused within the glass at the time of moulding, as opposed to being applied after cooling, ensuring optimum vibrancy. Iittala’s new annual colour, is also celebrated in a range of glassware including tumblers from the Aino Aalto and Kartio collections.
by Jennifer Ring