INTO THE WOODS:An Exploration OF iittala
As part of the London Design Festival 2009 CHELSEA space is pleased to present an exhibition of Scandinavian glass design curated by the renowned Finnish designer, Harri Koskinen. Focussing on the iittala company, Koskinen will consider the work of Alvar Aalto, Aino Aalto, Kaj Franck, Tapio Wirkkala and others, drawing on materials from the Design Museum, Helsinki and iittala’s own vast archives and collections.
Koskinen has a deep appreciation of the simplicity and subtlety of Scandinavian design and the traditional techniques used to create some of the most interesting and lasting works in design history. His own relationship with iittala is well defined, as a designer he has collaborated with the company for over fifteen years, giving him a unique understanding of their interests, processes, history and direction.
Harri Koskinen studied at the Lahti Institute of Design and the University of Art and Design Helsinki. In 2000, he established his own studio called Friends of Industry, offering product and concept design and exhibition architecture. His uncompromising work is characterized by practicality and strict aesthetic criteria. He relies on existing techniques and materials but employs an innovative and experimental approach. His designs are pared down and simple, perhaps drawing on the experience of his rural upbringing in Karstula in the Finnish countryside. Koskinen is internationally renowned for award winning designs such as his Muu Chair for Montina, his Vakia watch for Issey Miyake, and his Block Lamp which is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. As well as iittala and Issey Miyake he has designed for many international brands including Muji, Panasonic, Seiko, Swarovski, Artek, and Marimekko.