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Artek’s visionary design found its expression in breakthrough technology to create pieces as timeless as the Picassos that used to hang above them in the shops of Helsinki. The dints, the scratches and the patina tell their never-ending story. And no matter where they’ve been or the place they’ll end up next, one thing is certain: they’re never out of time nor out of place. As Alvar Aalto once said, “Nothing old is ever reborn, but neither does it totally disappear. And that which has once been, will always reappear in a new form.”

Sustainable 2nd Cycle items are part of Artek’s environmental strategy. By creating the 2nd Cycle Artek wants to raise the discussion of conscious consuming, praise the authentic design and honour the importance of originality. Solidly made and impervious to fashion, these iconic pieces of furniture have gained value and beauty through their everyday use.

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Anna and Satu from Artek bulding the 2nd Cycle tower.

Designboost, which I’m co-founder of, has just made a conceptual exhibition with 2nd Cycle in the lobby of the Talk hotel just by the entrance of the Stockholm Furniture Fair. It consists if a 2nd Cycle tower, a description of the ideas behind the project and also a filmed interview with Tom Dixon, creative director of Artek, which we filmed in London a week ago.

A coded RFID tag embedded in each 2nd Cycle item records the furniture’s history, stories, as well as information about its origins. The tag can be read by mobile phone, revealing an internet link to the particular item’s history, allowing also new owners to upload their own stories.

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I especially love this Alvar Aalto chair which stands in the base of the tower. You can really imagine the small girl or boy who used it in the sixties.

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