Alvar Aalto’s commissioned-MoMa table was sold at auction

Originally designed in 1920s, the table was revised by Aalto in the early seventies: unfortunately, however, it never reached the museum.

Alvar Aalto commissioned-MoMa round table.

Stockholms Auktionsverk in Helsinki has sold a unique item by the great Finnish architect and designer Alvar Aalto: a ound table commissioned by MoMA, with six nickel-plated shelves and a integrated ashtray, marked AA Valaistustyö Ky and manufactured in 1974–75.


With this table Aalto would have placed himself in the same company as Ellen Gray, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier. Unfortunately the delivery was interrupted when Valaistustyö Ky’s founder, Viljo Hirvonen, fell ill and died in 1975 and the company ceased to exist. The table never came on board the boat to New York and the following year Alvar Aalto also died.

A first prototype for the table was designed by Aalto in the 1920s. In 1973-74, Aalto returned to the original round table with the six polished tops, which he renovated with a slightly larger ashtray placed further out towards the table edge. The table has been privately owned ever since and has been sold on April 24th at auction. The asking price was €50,000-70,000 and was sold for €140,000.

Opening image: Image courtesy of Stockholms Auktionsverk

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