iittala Designer Series: Oiva Toikka

Oiva Toikka, a Finnish glass designer and professor born in Viipuri, Finland, is thought to be one of the greatest names in Finnish glass. Best known for his iittala designs, Tiokka was originally trained in ceramics, and is also deeply involved in the world of performing arts. His bold designs speak for themselves, and are a great departure from more traditional Nordic design. He's even contributed to the textile designs of Marimekko at times throughout his career. Oiva Toikka

Toikka's collection of glass birds are some of iittala’s most popular pieces, and also some of his best known works. In addition to the Toikka birds, Oiva has also contributed other lines to the iittala brand, including the Kastehelmi glass dinnerware collection, and the annual cube, which changes each year. His design pieces, specifically the birds, have become sought after gifts and collector's items.

iittalla Toikka Hiplu Glass BirdWhen asked to define his work, Toikka has said: ”Baroque is exactly the right word to describe my work – after all, one of the word’s original meanings is ”an irregular pearl." His career accomplishments have resulted in many international awards and prizes, including the Lunning Prize, the Pro Finlandia Medal, the World Glass Now 85 Award, the Kaj Franck Design Prize and the Prince Eugen Medal.