Victoriana: The Art of Revival

From the macabre to the quaint, the sensational to the surreal, ‘Victoriana: The Art of Revival’ is the first ever exhibition in the UK to offer a major examination of Victorian revivalism in all its forms.’ – Guildhall Art Gallery

Victoriana: The Art of Revival showcases work of artists from the last twenty years who have been inspired by the 19th century. The 19th century was an era of industrial revolution, exploration and social change, these aspect led to a great development in society and as a result great art and design can be found from that period. Continue reading

The Young Dürer: Drawing the Figure

What is the The Young Dürer: Drawing the Figure?

Don’t miss your chance to see outstanding early works by Dürer as well as rare drawings and prints by his contemporaries, many of which have never been seen in the United Kingdom.’ – The Courtauld Gallery

This exhibition at The Courtauld Gallery explores Albrecht Dürer’s art during the years of 1490 to 1496, where he was travelled widely throughout Europe looking at the new influences around him and allowing experimenting with his art until he was able to reinvent his own artistic approach. Continue reading

BDA Dental Museum

What is the BDA Dental Museum?

The museum is based in the British Dental Association headquarters in central London and is open to everyone. From 19th century dental floss to toothache cures, clockwork drills to toothpaste adverts, there is more to discover than you might imagine.’ – BDA

This museum opened in 1919 after Lilian Lindsay became the first qualified female dentist in the UK, she had donated her old dental equipment to the BDA starting the museum.

The museum was opened to the public in 1967 when the BDA moved premises. The entire collection itself is 30.000 strong and is now partly on show, the artefacts on display include a collection of tooth brushes, an exquisite dental chair dating for the early 20th century, a dentists tool box, and anatomical models used for teaching.

Thoughts…

This museum would be perfect for a nice lunch break visit, the staff were very helpful and knowledgable and museum is generally quite self-explanatory. The large print information clearly on display, however the labeling for the individual items was not as clear.

The exhibition space is  small but nice,with a cabinet outside dedicated to Lilian Lindsay. The space was not over crowded and was neatly organised showing a good range of artefacts.

Admission free. Open Tuesdays and Thursdays 1pm–4pm

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Extraordinary Stories about Ordinary Things

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What is Extraordinary Stories about Ordinary Things?

Discover key designs that have shaped the modern world and be inspired by this fascinating exhibition of memorable objects from the Design Museum Collection.’ – The Design Museum

This exhibition is part of the museums permanent collection of contemporary design; it looks at the extraordinary qualities in the everyday objects and how everyday life and society has changed as a result. The large room is separated into six categories:
Taste!
Fash!on
Mater!als & Processes
!dentity & Des!gn
!cons
Why we Collect!

Thoughts…

The exhibition space is  nice and spacious though the layout toward the back confused me a little. The objects are lovingly displayed on simple ply wood structures that are unobtrusive. The information on display is helpful and there is even some designer profiles on more influential designers.

There is a great variety of products and my favorite section was the !con section as it allowed truly everyday objects to be fully appreciated with some background material and context such as drawings and photographs to give the object in question an in depth story.

Extraordinary Stories about Ordinary Things is on until the 04 January 2015. Advance booking is essential.

Entry fees apply and concessions are available.

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United Micro Kingdoms (UmK): A Design Fiction

United Micro Kingdoms, Rowan MooreImage from [x]

What is United Micro Kingdoms (UmK): A Design Fiction?

UmK presents perspectives on a fictional future for the United Kingdom, as imagined by designers and educators Dunne & Raby. The exhibition sees England devolved into four self-contained counties, each free to experiment with governance, economy and lifestyle. These ‘live laboratories’ interrogate the cultural and ethical impact of existing and new technologies and how they alter the way we live.‘ – The Design Museum

This exhibition at the Design Museum explores the dystopian fictional future of the UK as designed by Dunne & Raby. In their interpretation England is split in to four micro kingdoms that rule their land as a self-contained system.

These micro kingdoms are Digitarians, Communo-Nuclearists, Anarcho-Evolutionists and Bioliberals. Each distinct society has their own rules and systems that differ greatly from the next; the Digitarians are heavily reliant on technology and the market forces, which when combined their citizens are no different to consumers. The Communo-Nuclearists are a society that solely use neucler energy to survive, they are always moving as no one wants to live next to them. The Anarcho-Evolutionists have halted the progression of most technological development and instead focus on using what technologies that they do accept to genetically developing themselves and their live stock. The final society is the Bioliberals who embrace biotechnology and use it to develop their own food, energy and products according to their own means and wants. For more information visit the UMK Website.

Thoughts…

The space is laid out in a small section of the museum and separated via kingdoms, it is relatively easy to follow around and there is even a small library  and furniture in the exhibition space for some related reading. The items on display vary from statistics and photographs to scaled down models of transport, animals and people.

This is an unusual but nonetheless interesting exhibition that uses design as tool to portray a not-so-bright future. Some aspects such as those of the dependence on technology and the modifications of ourselves and animals can be seen in society as it is today. These similarities help the visitor have a connection with the particular kingdoms however these situations are so abstract that they seem novel and draw us in to learn more about this fictional world.

United Micro Kingdoms (UmK): A Design Fiction is on until the 26 August 2013 at the Design Museum.

Entry fees apply (Adult £8  with donation and £7.20 without donation, members go in for free and concessions are available)

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UMK Website
More information
Culture 24
The Guardian

Life and Death: Pompeii and Herculaneum

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What is Life and Death: Pompeii and Herculaneum?

Preserved under ash, the cities lay buried for just over 1,600 years, their rediscovery providing an unparalleled glimpse into the daily life of the Roman Empire. From the bustling street to the intimate spaces of a Roman home, this major exhibition will take you to the heart of people’s lives in Pompeii and Herculaneum.’ – The British Museum

Mount Vesuvius erupted in AD 79; in a space of a day a two cities in the Bay of Naples, southern Italy, were buried under metres of ash. The cities Pompeii and Herculaneum are known for this tragic event, however this exhibition explores not only the death of these two cities and its inhabitants but also the life in these societies before the ashes of Mount Vesuvius consumed the land.

Historians and archaeologists are able to discover so much about these societies as the ashes preserved the form of  the objects and people it buried. The excavation began in the 18th century and soon after it was discovered that the empty cavities of what were once people could be used as mould. This new development meant that a lot more could be discovered about the way in which people died and who they were.

Thoughts…

The exhibition covers the large domed exhibition space at The British Museum, it is closely laid out like a Roman house and each room has relevent artefacts on display. The arfefacts are a varied and show Pompeii and Herculaneum to be thriving cities.

The ‘life’ section of this exhibiton was very vast and informative and there was a clear division between the ‘life’ and ‘death’ sections. What was a bright and white space with sounds in the backround (Which I wasn’t the biggest fan of) soon turns into a dark room, the darkness of the roon relfect the sombreness of the exhibits. Here are the casts of the people who were engulfed by the ashes and later turned into statues. What was interesting was the common pose in which they died in; the ‘boxing pose is said to be a result of the intense heat that contacted the muscles and cleanched the fits of the dead.

This exhibition gives a different perspective to a society that is known to be a victim on a volcanic eruption and is a great summer exhibtion that isn’t too acadamicly heavy but very educational and informative.

Life and death Pompeii and Herculaneum is on until the 29 September 2013. Advance booking is. essential

Entry fees apply (Adults £15, Under 16s and members free, Concessions available) 

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The Guardian