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Architect Alvar Aalto
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Location Helsinki, Finland   map
Date 1962 to 1969   timeline
Building Type retail, bookstore and offices
 Construction System copper-clad curtain wall with white marble inset
Climate cold
Context urban
Style Modern
Notes subtle facade modulation, sculptural roof lights.


Interior photo showing main floor, mezzanine, and expressed skylights


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Discussion Academic Bookshop Commentary

"Externally the building is a relatively straightforward copper-clad curtain wall. The brighter character of the Pohjois-Esplanadi is recognised by lining the window frames with strips of white marble. The two entrances off either street converge under an array of light fittings, from which leads the three-storey space of the bookshop tucked in behind other buildings. Three crystalline rooflights bring light into this volume, and indeed appear to have embedded themselves in the roof. The vertically striped balustrades of white marble seem to attenuate the height of the space and dominate the colourful display of books."

—David Dunster, ed. Architectural Monographs 4: Alvar Aalto. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1984. p63.

Sources on Academic Bookshop

Donald Corner and Jenny Young, University of Oregon. Slide from photographers' collection. PCD.2350.1012.1143.49. interior photo showing main floor, mezzanine, and expressed skylights.

David Dunster, ed. Alvar Aalto. London: St. Martin's Press, 1978. p63-65

Kevin Matthews. The Great Buildings Collection on CD-ROM. Artifice, 2001. ISBN 0-9667098-4-5.— Available at  Find books about Academic Bookshop


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