Artek tables are based on different combinations of Alvar Aalto’s L-legs and tabletops. Aalto introduced the bent L-leg for the first time in 1933, and it became a standard component in his furniture designs. Judging his importance as a designer and architect, Aalto considered the development of the L-leg as his greatest achievement – he even called the L-leg "the little sister of the architectonic column". The development of the L-leg was revolutionary because it solved the problem of attaching legs directly to the tabletop in a completely new way – the leg could be fastened with screws directly to the tabletop, and the result was a simple but very solid structure.
Aalto extension table 97, birch - white
- Birch, white
- 135 cm, extended 190 cm
- 85 cm
- 74 cm
- Birch, laminate
- Comes flat-packed. Includes 1 extension leaf (55 x 85 cm), stored separately when not in use.
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Alvar Aalto (1898-1976) is probably the most famous Finnish architect and designer in the world. In 1921 Alvar Aalto got the Diploma of Architecture at the Helsinki Institute of Technology and his career as an architect started. One of the most important works he was commissioned was the planning of the tuberculosis sanatorium in Paimio, Finland. This project meant also the beginning of Aalto’s career as a furniture designer – in fact, this was the first building planned by Aalto which was entirely furnished with pieces of furniture designed by Aalto himself – including the lighting as well. Other important projects completed by Alvar Aalto are the Viipuri Municipal Library, Villa Mairea, La Maison Carré and the Finnish Pavilions for the 1937 Paris and 1939 New York World Fairs.
In 1935 Alvar Aalto, together with Aino Aalto, Maire Gullichsen and Nils-Gustav Hahl, founded Artek, a world-renowned furniture and lighting company. The company was created "to sell furniture" – designed by Alvar Aalto – "and to promote modern culture of habitation by exhibitions and other means".
One of the most ingenious innovations by Alvar Aalto is the L-leg, patented in 1933. Aalto considered his L-leg design his greatest achievement and even compared it to the invention of the architectonic column. Thanks to this innovation, the legs could be attached directly to the table, chair and stool tops. Alvar Aalto was a versatile designer whose work covered different fields. He is well-known also for his elegant lamps, which very often were designed for individual construction projects and later on adapted for the serial production. Alvar Aalto was also an esteemed glass designer and his most famous work as a glass designer is the Aalto vase (or Savoy vase) – one of the most iconic glassware pieces in Finnish design.
Would you like to read more about Alvar Aalto and his work? Discover our books:
Aalto, Alvar Aalto Homes, Alvar Aalto Libraries, Alvar Aalto Designer, Alvar Aalto – The Mark of the Hand, Alvar Aalto – A Gentler Structure for Life, Alvar Aalto Architect vol. 5, Alvar Aalto Architect vol. 18, Alvar Aalto Architect vol. 20, Iittala, Atlas of Mid-Century Modern Houses, Mid-Century Modern Design, Modernist Escapes: An Architectural Travel Guide
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