The V&A is the 'hub' of the London Design Festival - and one of the world's greatest museums dedicated to art and design. This year they worked closely with LDF to create a series of installations in 'secret spaces' within the museum that are not usually open the public. Several of the installations showcase sustainable design concepts for the future - read on for a first look!
Installed in a roof space of the V&A only accessible by a tiny spiral staircase, Keiichi Matsuda‘s Prism is a visual representation of live environmental data from across London – from the weather to the level of the Thames, the number of ‘Boris bikes’ out, and how much energy 10 Downing Street is using.
All of the information used is publicly available, although not always as a live feed. It’s just a question of pulling it all together in a meaningful way. An interesting insight was that while Downing Street’s energy usage is low for most of the night, it does spike at around 4am when the immersion heaters come on!
All the materials for the installation had to be winched up through the hole in the middle of the floor, through which you can see the ceramics gallery below.
Dominic Harris‘ Walk The Light combines heat sensors, camera tracking technology and LED lights to create a wall of light that follows people as they enter or leave the museum. When there are multiple people in the tunnel, it decides who to follow based on group size and movement. The color of the light changes according the to the temperature of the space – something which must have applications for assessing heat loss in built environments.
For Out of the Woods, a collaboration between the RCA, the America Hardwood Export Council and Benchmark Furniture, students were asked to consider the entire lifecycle of products from the transport of raw materials through to ways to extend their lifespan.
They were asked to consider not only how durability might affect lifespan but also desirability and timeless aesthetics.
Nendo‘s Mimicry Chairs are white chairs which appear throughout the museum, always arranged in a way that gently mimics their environment.
The chairs above appear next to the lift shaft and echo its movement between floors.
A second installation by Dominic Harris, Ice Angel, uses more LEDs – 6,500 to be precise – along with cameras and computer coding to create unique angle wings for those who stand in front of the screen. Visitors move their arms up and down and the lights make it appear as if they were flying.
The device even takes biometric data, with which it ‘remembers’ each participant and will recreate their specific wings if they return at a later date.
Thomas Heatherwick Studio created an installation called “Traffic Cones at the V&A” to celebrate the exhibition “Thomas Heatherwisk Studio: Designing the Extraordinary”, which is currently on show within the museum.
The studio is also responsible for the Olympic Cauldron and the new bus for London.
All photos by Katie Treggiden for Inhabitat