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AALTO, ALVAR
(1898 - 1976)
architect, academician
 

Alvar Aalto (1898-1976) was born in Kuortane, from where his family soon moved to Jyväskylä. Aalto matriculated from the Jyväskylä Lyceum in 1916, whereupon he commenced architectural studies at the Polytechnic (now University of Technology) in Helsinki. From there he returned to his former home town of Jvväskylä, where he founded and ran his own architectural office from 1923 to 1927. In 1924 Alvar Aalto married Aino Marsio, also an architect. From Jyväskylä the Aaltos moved their office to Turku and later to Helsinki. Aalto spent the closing years of the 1930s in the United States, working, for example, as visiting professor at MIT in Cambridge. Following Aino Aalto's death he married Elsa-Kaisa (Elissa) Mäkiniemi in 1952. Aalto took part in several international architectural competitions and designed buildings for locations around the world. Aalto's buildings in Central Finland include Jyväskylä City Theatre, Jyväskylä Workers' Club and the Defence Corps Building, Muurame Church, municipal offices and an experimental house in Säynätsalo, the Museum of Central Finland and many buildings of the University of Jyväskylä. Aalto was also responsible for a number of town plans.


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