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Finnish 'Spaceship House' Auctioned in Paris

A bit of Finnish design history went on sale on Tuesday in Paris as one of the surviving Futuro houses was sold at Christie's auction house. Less than 100 of these plastic spaceship-like houses were built in the late 1960s, to a design by architect Matti Suuronen. There are two or three still standing in Finland, along with dozens as far away as New Zealand, Japan and California. An unnamed European collector bought the portable structure for 140,000 euros, slightly less than expected. Christie's had predicted it would sell for more than 150,000 euros. "We're very delighted because it's the first time a Futuro house has been offered at auction," said Simon Andrews, a Senior Specialist in the 20th century decorative art and design department at Christie's. "But the most important thing is that Finnish Design -- a great landmark design like this -- has found a new audience. People responded happily to it, and it's changed hands. It's going to be entering the collection of a European, so European collectors I suppose recognising good European design." The model sold in Paris has previously been displayed at museums in the Netherlands and Luxemburg. A revival of interest in these kitsch icons was spurred by the coffee-table book Futuro: Tomorrow's House from Yesterday, published in Finnish and English in 2002 along with a DVD documentary. YLE

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