Belgium’s Grand-Hornu Images is dedicating its next exhibition to Finnish architect and designer Alvar Aalto (1898-1976), one of the pioneers in the quest for solutions to perfect the lighting inside buildings.
“A pioneer of organic design and an iconic figure of Scandinavian architecture and design, Alvar Aalto is an inexhaustible source of inspiration for current generations.” says Grand-Hornu Images. “Designed to be all-embracing art forms (gezamtkunstwerken), his projects include furniture and lighting with a humanist spirit. It is his work on artificial lighting, meticulous investigations inspired by the subtle Nordic light that he was keen to include in his architectural work, which Grand-Hornu Images has decided to explore in more detail. The roots of this project lie in a private collection (various owners) containing more than a hundred pieces.”
The exhibition is divided into two sections; the first is an installation, a walk across a pontoon suspending over water, in which Aalto’s creations hang and reflect their light, the second, archive documents, photos and drawings that describe the genesis of Aalto’s lights, their mechanics and their intrinsic links with architecture.
“You can really see the quality of the light, the chiaroscuro contrasts and reflections, in an experience designed to remind us of the importance of nature in Alvar Aalto’s design and architecture. The whole exhibition shows the extent to which, taken out of their architectural context and functioning as isolated units, each light becomes a part of a spatial and contextual experience.”
The exhibition, from February 9 to May 4, 2014, presents seven projects that have been chosen to illustrate the emergence of Alvar Aalto’s most iconic lights, within the overall context of his architectural work.