Once furniture leaves the glossy surrounds of a showroom, you would presume that the manufacturers' hope is that it will not be returned. However in the case of Artek, the hope is quite the opposite.
Since 2007, the brand has been actively seeking out its unwanted and abandoned furniture and lighting, from schools, flea markets and estate sales, then reselling the designs to a new generation as part of its '2nd Cycle' programme. Over eight million Alvar Aalto products have been sold worldwide since the brand's inception in 1935, so there is no shortage of them in circulation.
Previously only available through Artek's dedicated 2nd Cycle store in Helsinki - with a few select pieces sold through the Vitra and Artek store in the recently opened retail complex Bikini Berlin - today marks the opening of the 2nd Cycle market at the Berlin outpost, which takes over the entire store for two days.
Running until tomorrow, the market will provide Berlin-based Finnish design fanatics with the chance to get their hands on the coveted pre-loved pieces, including mid-century classics by designers such as Ilmari Tapiovaara and Alvar Aalto. In addition, visitors to the event will also be encouraged to bring along their own pieces of used Finnish furniture for experts to evaluate, authenticate and then potentially buy back in return for a store gift certificate.