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I L M A R I   T A P I O V A A R A

 Ilmari Tapiovaara was born in Hämeenlinna (Finland) in 1914 and shared a home with his 12 siblings. From a young age, Tapiovaara was in close contact with nature, as his family was involved in forestry-related occupations; his father was a forest ranger and his grandfather a cabinetmaker. The family spent the summers in the Finnish countryside, and this remained an important value consistently present in the designer s work. As Tapiovaara once said, "Nature is the best and closest manual for the industrial designer."

Internationally renowned, Ilmari Tapiovaara dedicated part of his professional career to teaching both in the United States and in Finland. The cornerstones of his work were respect for nature and the materials it provides, his wide range of design techniques and an emphasis on Philosophy. Tapiovaara considered Philosophy to be fundamental for the designer because without an ideological foundation, design was meaningless.

Simple and meticulous, Ilmari Tapiovaara laid the foundations of Finnish industrial design.

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