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The MAXIMAL I MINIMAL programme for the international Alvar Aalto Design Seminar has been confirmed. At the design and architecture event to be held in August twelve of today’s most current designers and manufacturers will air their thoughts on quality and responsibility in design work.

This year’s theme, MAXIMAL I MINIMAL, is an appeal on behalf of high-quality design. The event will be chaired by Simo Heikkilä, who challenges participants and the twelve speakers to consider the choices made in design work and the sustainability of those choices.

“The words ‘maximal’ and ‘minimal’ are in every designer’s vocabulary, at least in spirit. In their day-to-day work designers have to choose between two options: Does the task require a minimal approach or would a maximal one be attractive? Will people be happy or downright unhappy when using my design? Is there still a place for art in my design, or should I give in to the WOW factor and commercialism? Does my design have a long lifespan or will it simply become yet more unwieldy waste? Do I work globally or locally, in a maximal or minimal manner?” Heikkilä muses.

Taking the podium will be Milano Design Award 2016 winner Hans Lensvelt, the Japanese lighting guru Kaoru Mende, and Johanna Vuorio, who is CEO of Nikari, known for its skill and expertise with wood. Also appearing are Jonas Bohlin, Richard Hutten, Jouko Järvisalo, Max Lamb, Cecilie Manz, Päivi Meuronen and Aimo Katajamäki, and Fien Muller and Hannes Van Severen.

An exhibition that has emerged out of a joint project between Finnish design students and speakers at the event will premiere at the Design Seminar. The fascinating results of this collaboration both challenge and overturn our traditional ways of thinking about the bookshelf.

Read more from the press release.

Check out the Alvar Aalto Design Seminar website at

Act now to register at early bird prices. Lower-priced early bird tickets are available until 30 June, 2016.

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