Skip to main content

Alvar Aalto

Finnish, 1898-1976

An architect and designer, Alvar Aalto deserves an immense share of the credit for bringing Scandinavian modernism to a prominent place in the global arena. In both his buildings and in his furnishings — which range from chairs, tables and lighting to table- and glassware — Aalto’s sensitivity to the natural world and to organic forms and materials tempered the hardness of rationalist design.

Relatively few Aalto buildings exist outside Finland. (Just four exist in the United States, and only one — the sinuous 1945 Baker House dormitory at M.I.T. — is easily visited.) International attention came to Aalto, whose surname translates to English as “wave,” primarily through his furniture.

Instead of the tubular metal framing favored by the Bauhaus designers and Le Corbusier, Aalto insisted on wood. His aesthetic is best represented by the Paimio armchair, developed in 1930 as part of his overall design of a Finnish tuberculosis sanatorium. Comfortable, yet light enough to be easily moved by patients, the chair’s frame is composed of two laminated birch loops; the seat and back are formed from a single sheet of plywood that scrolls under at the headrest and beneath the knees, creating a sort of pillow effect. Aalto’s use of plywood had enormous influence on Charles Eames, Arne Jacobsen, Marcel Breuer and others who later came to the material.

Concerned with keeping up standards of quality in the production of his designs, Aalto formed the still-extant company Artek in 1935, along with his wife, Aino Aalto, whose glass designs were made by the firm. In the latter medium, in 1936 the Aaltos together created the iconic, undulating Savoy vase, so-called for the luxe Helsinki restaurant for which the piece was designed. Artek also produced Aalto lighting designs, many of which — such as the Angel’s Wing floor lamp and the Beehive pendant — incorporate a signature Aalto detail: shades made of concentric enameled-metal rings graduated down in diameter. The effect of the technique is essential Alvar Aalto: at once precise, simple, and somehow poetic.

Average Sold Price
$4,027
Styles
Materials
Iconic Designs from Alvar Aalto
Explore timeless pieces that have earned their place in history.
Savoy Vase
Savoy Vase
Angel Wing Floor Lamp
Angel Wing Floor Lamp
Stool 60
Stool 60
Chair 66
Chair 66
Armchair 406 "Pension Chair" by Alvar Aalto for Artek
By Alvar Aalto
Located in Seattle, WA
2005 production Armchair 406 by Alvar Aalto for Artek in birch and natural webbing. This was affectionately nicknamed "Pension Chair" as it allows the user to be in a state of "retir...
Category

Early 2000s Finnish Mid-Century Modern Alvar Aalto

Materials

Birch

Early Shelf in Birch by Alvar Aalto for Aalto Möbler, Hedemora, Sweden
By Alvar Aalto
Located in Goteborg, SE
During the 1940´s Alvar Aalto had a production of his furniture in Hedemora, Sweden. This beautiful shelf is from that period. It comes with original wall mounts but can be mounted w...
Category

1940s Swedish Scandinavian Modern Vintage Alvar Aalto

Materials

Birch

Alvar Aalto High Glass Bowl Savoy High, circa 1960
By Alvar Aalto
Located in Barcelona, Barcelona
Glass designed by Alvar Aalto, circa 1960. Manufactured in Finland. Signed In original condition, with minor wear consistent with age and use, preserving a beautiful patina. ...
Category

1960s Finnish Mid-Century Modern Vintage Alvar Aalto

Materials

Glass

Alvar Aalto Y61 Stool
By Artek, Alvar Aalto
Located in Highland, IN
Designed in 1947, Alvar Aalto's Y61 stool required a special technique to create the unique Y-leg. This vintage example was sold in the US by ICF and has a rich patina attesting to y...
Category

1940s Finnish Scandinavian Modern Vintage Alvar Aalto

Materials

Canvas, Birch

  • Alvar Aalto Y61 Stool
  • Alvar Aalto Y61 Stool
  • Alvar Aalto Y61 Stool
  • Alvar Aalto Y61 Stool
H 17.25 in. W 16 in. D 16 in.
Pair of Alvar Aalto Bar Stools K65 Artek, 1930s
By Alvar Aalto
Located in Brussels, BE
Pair of Alvar Aalto bar stools K65 Artek, 1930s.
Category

1940s European Mid-Century Modern Vintage Alvar Aalto

Materials

Wood

  • Pair of Alvar Aalto Bar Stools K65 Artek, 1930s
  • Pair of Alvar Aalto Bar Stools K65 Artek, 1930s
  • Pair of Alvar Aalto Bar Stools K65 Artek, 1930s
  • Pair of Alvar Aalto Bar Stools K65 Artek, 1930s
H 27.96 in. W 14.97 in. D 14.18 in.
Set of Six Contemporary Modern Alvar Aalto Stools
By Alvar Aalto
Located in Brooklyn, NY
This gorgeous set of six Mid-Century Modern style stools feature an ebony finish and angled legs. Sleek design with a circular kick rests and a molded wood frame adds to the allure. ...
Category

20th Century Mid-Century Modern Alvar Aalto

Materials

Wood

Alvar Aalto Model A805 'Angel Wing' Floor Lamp
By Valaisinpaja Oy, Alvar Aalto
Located in Los Angeles, CA
Stunning floor lamp model A805 'Angel Wing' designed by Alvar Aalto in 1954 and later manufactured by Valaisinpaja Oy, Finland with white louvered metal shade, shaft and base covered...
Category

Late 20th Century Finnish Scandinavian Modern Alvar Aalto

Materials

Metal, Brass

  • Alvar Aalto Model A805 'Angel Wing' Floor Lamp
  • Alvar Aalto Model A805 'Angel Wing' Floor Lamp
  • Alvar Aalto Model A805 'Angel Wing' Floor Lamp
  • Alvar Aalto Model A805 'Angel Wing' Floor Lamp
H 68.5 in. W 20.75 in. D 13.5 in.
Alvar Aalto Set of "K65" Stools in Laminated Birch by Artek, Finland in 1950s
By Artek, Alvar Aalto
Located in Odense, DK
Amazing set of 4 early production Alvar Aalto "K65" high chair / stools in beautiful vintage condition made at Artek in the 1950s. The stools are made of laminated and lacquered birc...
Category

1950s Finnish Scandinavian Modern Vintage Alvar Aalto

Materials

Birch

Browse all Furniture from Alvar Aalto
Shop Now

Alvar Aalto Sellers

Modernity
No Reviews Yet
Studio Schalling
4.9 / 5
FK Gallery
4.4 / 5
Splendid Antiques
5 / 5
ABC Modern
4.7 / 5
Helmer Design & Antik
4.9 / 5
Pegboard Modern
4.8 / 5

Creators Similar to Alvar Aalto

Alvar Aalto Furniture for sale on 1stDibs.

Alvar Aalto Furniture are available on 1stDibs for sale. These distinctive objects are often made of wood and designed with extraordinary care. There are many options in our Alvar Aalto collection of furniture, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. We have 241 vintage editions of these items in-stock, while there is 0 modern edition to choose from as well. Many original furniture by Alvar Aalto were created in Europe during the 20th century in the Mid-Century Modern style. Many customers also consider furniture by Yrjö Kukkapuro Furniture, Carl Gustav Hiort af Ornäs Furniture and Aino Aalto Furniture if you are looking for additional options. The prices for Alvar Aalto furniture can vary depending on size, time period and other attributes. Prices for these items start at $238 and top out at $60,202 on 1stDibs. Pieces like these can sell for $4,402.