The Aalto Natives — A Transcendental ManualFrame Finland
Book, Identity
2017
Published by Mousse Publishing
With Xander Karskens (Curator)Beau Bertens (Design Assistant)
220mm x 300mm
112 pages
—Awards and exhibitions:

Best Dutch Book Design 2017 (student selection)
28th International Biennial of Graphic Design Brno 2018

Identity and catalogue developed for the Alvar Aalto Pavilion of Finland at the 57th International Art Exhibition — La Biennale di Venezia 2017

The Aalto Natives — A Transcendental Manual By Nathaniel Mellors And Erkka Nissinen re-imagines Finnish society through the eyes of two messianic outsider figures, Geb and Atum, who are represented by talking animatronic puppets. It conflates ideas and tropes from archaeology, anthropology and science fiction.

Atum is a man-like gure with a cardboard-box with two eyes as head. He is the son of God, represented as a gigantic talking egg. His expedition to discover the new land Finland brings to mind the way pioneers travelled the American Wild West. The guitar Atum carries with him while dwelling over the vast sandy plains adds to this feeling.

This atmosphere is reflected in the decision to use Kraft paper for the book cover. The bold type brings to mind the woodblock printed posters of the mid-west. The print campaign that announced the Aalto Natives show in the Cobra Museum in Amstelveen, NL, featured another protagonist of the lm, Mr President, a bespectacled round white balloon-like head with flimsy arms and legs. We produced a short trailer as an online teaser for the Amstelveen show.