Iittala’s 140th anniversary is celebrated in Design Museum

Iittala celebrates its 140th anniversary this year. The glass factory that was established in the small village of Iittala in 1881 has developed into a large company with roots tightly intertwined with the foundations of the Finnish design history.

Tapio Wirkkala worked closely for Iittala throughout his career. Between 1946 and 1951, Tapio designed more than 120 art works that were put into production at Iittala. One of them was the Kantarelli vase, designed in 1947, which won the Grand Prix at the 1951 Milan Triennial. The timeline of Iittala’s long history includes not only the characteristics of the design languages ​​of different eras, but also the development of production techniques. In the 1950s, Tapio got also interested in serial production: a glass series bearing the name of its designer, Tapio, was designed. It is the longest-running glass series in production in Finland. In 1968 Ultima Thule designed by Tapio took off on a first-class flight on Finnair’s new route to New York.

Iittala’s anniversary is celebrated at the Design Museum with the exhibition Iittala – Kaleidoscope, which opens in March 2021. The exhibition is curated and designed by architect Florencia Colombo and industrial designer Ville Kokkonen. The exhibition is on display at the Design Museum from March 26 to September 19, 2021.