* The spread of tuberculosis in Finland became the wars led to the construction of a number of sanatoria throughout the country.
* Paimio was chosen as the location for the sanatorium and there was a competition for its design which was resolved at the end of January 1929.
* Alvar Aalto’s proposal was placed first. In Aalto’s entry for the competition, the buildings were grouped in a Neo-Classical manner with sun balconies representing a more modern architectural approach. Lying in the sun on a balcony was part of the treatment for tuberculosis so that the balconies like these were an essential part of sanatorium architecture.
* The closed building ...view middle of the document...
In 1963, these sun terraces were glazed in.
* Aalto used flowing plastic forms as a fixed part of the building, on the roof terrace of the Sanatorium.
* Although the Paimio Sanatorium building represents Functionalism of a stylistically pure kind, there is an unambiguous duality about it. On the one hand, you have tradition and influences from elsewhere and on the other you have a creative innovativeness that is something quite new. In Paimio, this duality can be seen in the composition, which is both symmetrical and asymmetrical; a symmetrical and intimate inner courtyard is formed in front of the main entrance, while at the same time, the building masses spread out asymmetrically as part of nature.
* The intimacy of the entrance court is highlighted by the first light fitting that Aalto designed for external use. He called it 'Valonheittäjä' (Floodlight).
* The idea of continuity and movement is crystallised in the plastic form of the entrance canopy at Paimio Sanatorium. This idea links the symmetrical entrance court to the sun canopies of A-wing and the cylinder-shaped chimney of the boiler house, giving the overall composition a harmonious form.
* B-Wing: On the second floor, a common room, which is an extension of the dining hall, opens onto the landscape through a panoramic window. From the outside, the window appears as a purely Functionalist strip window, slightly raised from the surface, with load-bearing elements that cannot be seen at all. On the east elevation, on the other hand, the load-bearing elements are highlighted on the fifth and sixth floors and on the fourth floor too, but asymmetrically. The load-bearing columns and beams create an intermediate space that is emphasised by the indrawn part of the façade being painted in a shade of red.
* The Functionalist aspect of the building - the typical emphasis on technology of the period - is represented by various things such as the glass-walled lift shaft and the abundance of details in metal, both in the elevations and in the interior.
* The entrance foyer works as a transitional circulation space between the wings that serve different functions. The original interior furnishings of the foyer including the pigeonholes for patients' slippers, emphasised the feeling of homeliness created for the long-stay patients. The stacking metal stool designed for the Sanatorium is in all probability the handwork of Aalto himself.
* For the foyer, Aalto designed a wooden arm chair, which was also shown at the Aato furniture exhibition in London in 1933. The character of the foyer was changed in 1956-58, when the Sanatorium began to change into an ordinary general hospital, and the foyer was given a curved reception desk. The alterations were designed by Aalto's own office.
* In the public spaces, the colour scheme of the Sanatorium is convergent with the neo-plastic art of the twenties and thirties: blue, yellow,...