Both the office building and the sanatorium emphasize functional, straightforward design and are without historical stylistic references. They go beyond the simplified classicism common in Finnish architecture of the 1920s, resembling somewhat thew building designed by Walter Groupius for the Bauhaus school of design in Dessau, Germany (1925-26). Like Gropius, Aalto use smooth white surfaces, ribbon windows (that is, windows in a continuous band), flat roofs, and terraces and balconies.
The third commission, the Viipuri Municipal Library, although exhibiting a similar dependence on European prototypes by Gropius and others, is a significant departure marking Aalto’s personal style. Its spatially complex interior is arranged on various levels. For the auditorium portion of the library Aalto devised an undulating acoustic ceiling of wooden strips, a fascinating detail that, together with his use of curved laminated wood furniture of his own design, appealed both to the public and to those professionals who had held reservations about the clinical severity of modern architecture.
The warm textures of wood provided a welcome contrast to the general whiteness of the building. It was Aalto’s particular success here that identified him with the so-called organic approach, or regional interpretation, of modern design. He continued in this vein, with manipulation of floor levels and use of natural materials, skylights, and irregular forms. By the mid-193s Aalto was recognized as one of the world’s outstanding modern architects; unlike many of his peers, he had an identifiable personal style. – William Benton (1943-1973), Helen Hemingway Benton (1973-1974). “The New Encyclopedia Britannica”