Modernism at the V&A

For our May Day Bank Holiday “trip” this year we booked tickets for the Modernism at the V&A. I wish I’d realised that there is a second room, which proved to be must larger and less cramped than the first one I focused my attention and energy on, taking in details of the utopian ideals, the place of mass manufacture in the domestic setting, the machinery to deliver a modern life, and the impact of modernism on performance art and national ideals. All very interesting, but a bit too academic for me at times. I much preferred the second room, which looked at the living environment, ranging from modernist architecture, up to town planning and down to furniture and kitchen design. The ticketing prevented is getting too packed, but I’m sure a lot of people didn’t continue on past the first part of the exhibition.

It surprised me how many “modern” designs actually date from the period between the two World Wars – verging on 100 years ago, particularly in relation to architecture and lighting design.

After a light lunch in the cafe in the cellars, we managed a couple of quick tours around the photography and book illustation award exhibitions. Then back to the City on the District line. Nice and easy – we’ll do it again.