Tapio Wirkkala was born in the southern city of Finland, Hanko in 1915. He was a graphic designer, interior architect and an extremely successful products-designer. Wirkkala worked in the design office of Raymond Loewy in New York among others and won three golden medals on the consecutive Milan Triennials 1951 and 1954 besides numerous design awards.
Tapio Wirkkala worked for Iittala from 1952. The drinking glasses series "Tapio" as well as his leaves-like wooden bowls, the "Leaf dishes" out of the 1950s are some of his most famous works for Iittala.
He also designed for Rosenthal from 1957, where Wirkkala designed the famous porcelain, glass and cutlery designs Century, Composition, Kurve, Polygon, Taille and Vatiation.
The service Century has been included in the permanent collection of the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris as example for contemporaneous design, as well as Variation has been included in the collection of the MoMa in New York.
Tapio Wirkkala passed by the 19th May of 1958 in Helsinki.