Articles — Architecture • Design • Furniture • Interior • Japan
Japonisme and the Origin of Modern Scandinavian Design
Architecture • Design • Furniture • Interior • Japan
While speaking in London in 1957, renowned architect and designer Alvar Aalto expressed this philosophy of design: “We should work for simple, good, undecorated things, but things which are in harmony with the human being and organically suited to the little man in the street.” Although Aalto was Finnish born, it would not be unusual to find a similar sentiment expressed in traditional Japanese design. This similarity in design aesthetics is perhaps not that surprising, though, when we consider that from as far back as the mid-19th century, many Scandinavian architects and artists were drawing inspiration from Japan. While Japonisme, or...