Alvar Aalto Library in Vyborg ― Saving a Modern Masterpiece
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On its completion in 1935, Alvar Aalto’s library in Vyborg was regarded as one of the most significant functionalist buildings of its time. The restoration of the library, which had been in a state of neglect for a long time, began in 1994 and was completed in 2013. The restoration work has since received several awards for the exceptionally high-quality result and the laudable international cooperation. Alvar Aalto Library in Vyborg Saving a Modern Masterpiece, Part 2 takes off from where the previous book ended and presents in detail, through texts, photos and drawings, the individual renovation projects that were completed in 2010-2013: the lecture hall, the lending and reading halls, the children’s library, the main entrance and lobby, the basement floors, the book storage and technical systems as well as the external walls and roofs. The book’s viewpoint is very much set in the present, in presenting the recently restored library, its pure white surfaces, the soft grey soapstone in the facade, and the carefully finished details of the windows, doors and staircases. The photos taken specially for the book beautifully show Aalto’s masterpiece in all its new splendour.
Eric Adlercreutz, architect, born 1935 in Helsinki, Finland. Adlercreutz studied architecture at Helsinki University of Technology, followed by post-graduate studies at the University of California Berkeley, USA. He practiced in various offices, including that of Alvar Aalto (1959–65). Adlercreutz has run his own office since 1962, and since 1974 as “Arkkitehtitoimisto A-Konsultit Oy”, together with partners Gunnel Adlercreutz, Hasse Hagerstrom, Tapani Kajaste and Staffan Lodenius. His major architectural works are: Motel Marine, Tammisaari; The Finnish Embassy in Warsaw, Poland; Maistraatintori Parish Hall, Helsinki; Maistraatintori Primary School, Helsinki; Lappeenranta Music Institute; Rauma City Hall; Espoo Parish Hall; and Kivikko Multi-Service Centre, Helsinki. Adlercreutz also designed the Mellin Auditorium, an addition to the main building of Helsinki University of Technology designed by Alvar Aalto. His work also include city planning projects in Helsinki, Espoo, Tammisaari and Stockholm, Sweden. He is also well known for his restoration projects, including: the 14th–17th century Kastelholm Castle on the Aland Islands; the Nordic Investment Bank, Helsinki; the Swedish School of Economics, Helsinki; and the Alvar Aalto Studio, Helsinki. Adlercreutz taught at Helsinki University of Technology in 1966–68 and 1969–70. He has also given lectures at universities, seminars and conferences in Finland and abroad. He has had published numerous articles in architectural journals, both in Finland and abroad. Adlercreutz has won 1st prize in 20 national open and invited architectural competitions. In 1968–69 he was awarded an Asla-Fulbright scholarship to study at University of California Berkeley, USA. Other awards he has received include the Finnish State Prize in Architecture and Urban planning in 1974, a one-year grant from the Finnish Academy in 1980, and a three-year grant from the Finnish Academy in 1992–95. Adlercreutz acted as a foreign assessor in the evaluation of candidates for the chair of Professor in Architecture at the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts in Stockholm in 1995. Eric Adlercreutz has been chairman of the Finnish Committee for the Restoration of Viipuri Library since 1994.Maija Kairamo was born 1935 in Oulu, Finland. Kairamo has studied architecture at Helsinki University of Technology, community planning at Salzburg Seminar of American Studies, architectural conservation at Stockholm Academy of Fine Arts, and construction management at HUT Lifelong Learning Institute. After graduation in 1963 she worked together with Erkki Kairamo in their joint office (1963–71). Kairamo made her career at the National Board of Antiquities (1963–98) in the field of preservation and architectural conservation. Her work included the restoration planning and design of several churches and other historical buildings, including Nousiainen medieval church, Tornio wooden church and Louhisaari mansion, as well as supervising restoration projects of several key official buildings, including Turku Cathedral, the Palace of the State Council, Paimio Sanatorium and the Helsinki Olympic Stadium refurbishment project. She acted as the manager of the rebuilding project of the Tyrvaa St. Olav’s medieval church (1997–98) and was a member of the committee for the restoration of the interior of the church (1998–2009). Kairamo has both edited and written several publications on architectural conservation. She has taught architectural conservation in several universities, and has presented lectures at seminars and conferences in both Finland and abroad. In 1971 Kairamo and her work group received joint 1st prize in the architectural competition for the rehabilitation of Suomenlinna Fortress. Maija Kairamo is a founder member of ICOMOS and DOCOMOMO in Finland and an honorary member of ICOMOS International. She was awarded a Helsinki University of Technology Scholarship in 1963 and a state grant in 1970. Kairamo has been a member of the board, secretary general and a member of the planning team of the Finnish Committee for the Restoration of Viipuri Library since 1998.Tapani Mustonen, architect, born 1961 in Turku, Finland. Mustonen studied architecture at Tampere University of Technology. A large part of his works is concerned with the planning of the alteration and repair of historically valuable buildings. His particular area of expertise is the restoration of modern architecture. He has been in charge of the restoration planning of the buildings of Alvar Aalto and other architects active during the 20th century. His main works include the restoration planning of buildings designed by Alvar Aalto, such as the House of Culture, Aalto’s own house at Riihitie 20, the Tehtaanmaki School in Anjalankoski, and Villa Tammekann in Tartu, Estonia. Among the buildings Mustonen himself has designed are the Ita-Uusimaa emergency services station in Porvoo. Apart from design work, Mustonen has also been the advisory architect to the Alvar Aalto Foundation (1995–98). During that period he studied extensively Aalto’s buildings and directed the planning projects for their renovation. Apart from the actual design projects, Mustonen has also continuously participated in the preparation of architectural historical reports on valuable buildings. The restoration of Villa Tammekann received the Europa Nostra prize in 2002. The alteration and repair work of the Tehtaanmaki School received the South-east Finland architectural award of in 2004. His designs have been published extensively in professional journals. Mustonen held the distinguished position of member of the architectural award jury for the Europa Nostra organisation in The Hague in 2006–2009. He is currently a president of Europa Nostra Finland and a member of the DOCOMOMO International Specialist Committee on Technology, which specialises in modernist architecture. He has also been a member of the City of Helsinki Architectural Design Sub-Committee. Tapani Mustonen has participated in the Viipuri Library project since its inception.