Erik Nitsche: Stockholm University
Artist: Erik Nitsche
Creating a whole new standard of building, rather than developing sensational single achievements, marks Sweden's modern architectural movement. This new standard can best be characterized by its unique adaptation of modern techniques to traditional building materials and traditional standards of craftsmanship. One of the leading forces in Sweden's modern architectural movement was Gunnar Asplund. Born in Stockholm, Asplund's early work reflected a synthesis of classical European forms and motifs with traditional Swedish forms and materials. Then, under the tutelage of Otto Wagner, his work became influenced by the emerging "International Style" of Walter Gropius. As a result, his emerging style reflected a desire for clarity and geometric balance. The Stockholm Central City Library was a perfect example of this emerging style. It is a severely square edifice with a central drum and a minimum of ornamentation. Asplund received international acclaim for his work and was placed in charge of the Stockholm Exhibition of 1930. There, many other Swedish architects influenced by Asplund's work -- such as Ralph Erskine -- demonstrated a new Swedish style noted for its imagination and gaiety. After the Exhibition, Erskine moved to the forefront of Swedish design. His most notable works include the cardboard factory at Fors, and the University of Stockholm which is featured in this artwork.
This painting was originally published on the Fleetwood® First Day Cover for the Sweden Europa 1987 Modern Art - Architecture stamp issued May 14, 1987.
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