Small Aalto Vase Alvar Aalto , 1936 The word aalto is Finnish for "wave," and in the 1930s Aalto captured the eternal wave in his classic series of vases. Long included in the MoMA design collection, these now-famous undulating vases are masterpieces of free-form modern design. With a sensual and flowing form, they seem to mimic the water they hold. Each lead-free crystal piece is mouth-blown into a mold and hand-polished. Made by Iittala.