The public’s fascination with space and its influence on popular culture, from design to literature and film, will be explored at a Space Age exhibition at the Victoria & Albert Museum of Childhood in November.
Following a final four-way pitch, consultancy Designmap has been appointed to create the exhibition design, graphics and interactive elements.
At Space Age: Exploration, Design and Popular Culture the reality of how space exploration has developed and how the science fiction worlds have been created in people’s imagination will be revealed, as well as the relationship between reality and fantasy.
According to Designmap director Daniel Sutton, ‘Our concept for the exhibition is inspired as much by the interior and furniture design of Verner Panton and Eero Aarnio, as by the more obvious rich seam of science fiction graphics.’
On display will be real space objects, largely from the V&A Museum’s collections, as well as classic space-inspired designs and childhood objects. Genuine space exploration items will be displayed alongside consumer goods styled along similar lines. For instance, a Russian spacesuit will be shown alongside an example from Pierre Cardin’s 1960s Cosmos fashion range, a rocket will be teamed with a lava lamp and sci-fi-inspired toys, and a space helmet will be exhibited next to a helmet TV.
The exhibition’s themes include: space exploration, fantasy, in the home, fashion and advances in technology.
Designmap will create vestibule-like environments to house each theme and will use object display, graphics, interactive installations and audio to explore the subjects.
According to Sutton, ‘The exhibition needs to appeal to adults and those interested in design as well as children and sci-fi buffs. The design will make clear links between the “real” space items and objects from the design world.’
The show will open on 24 November and run until 6 April 2008 at the V&A Museum of Childhood, before starting a UK tour from May 2008.