A singular building stands above the plains of the Willamette Valley. The library at Mt. Angel Abbey is one of only two architectural works in the United States designed by internationally renowned architect Alvar Aalto. Finnish born, Aalto became one of the great architects of the 20th century through his unique responses to modernism that critiqued to some extent, the ideologies of the Bauhaus movement. Aalto reflected his homeland’s unique environment… a nation of forests, rocks and an individualistic ideology, while also recognizing the role of history.
In this presentation AHC Education Committee member and retired architect Bob Hermanson will discuss Aalto, his designs for the Mt. Angel Abbey library, and the people that influenced his work, from mentor, Gunnar Asplund, back to the Enlightenment and French architect Étienne-Louis Boullée. You’ll also learn about Aalto’s philosophy regarding light, and nature itself, and how this philosophy played a role in his designs.
This lecture program is held at the Architectural Heritage Center - 701 SE Grand Avenue
Parking is on-street (free on Saturdays) or in the parking lot on the west side of Grand Avenue between SE Yamhill and Belmont Streets - just to the north of the Grand Marketplace. Do not use the lot where Dutch Bros. Coffee is located. Thank you to Bolliger and Sons Insurance for sharing their lot with us for our evening and Saturday education programs.
Image: Interior of Mt. Angel Abbey Library, Courtesy of modernhomesportland.com.