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The Victoria and Albert Museum

The Victoria and Albert Museum

A remarkable exhibit on the maker movement had been running since September at London’s Victoria and Albert museum, having just closed in January.  A visit over the holidays to London gave me a chance to see the exhibit for myself. The show collects the products, processes, and tools from dozens of makers throughout the world, focusing on artistic, non-commercial, or just plain fun design, craft, and artwork. Each of the displays highlighted in the show demonstrated the set of maker skills needed to create it.

The displays ranged from wooden bicycles and hammered metal to DIY 3D printing and mobile robotics (with textiles, dolls, video, and the odd six-necked guitar thrown in). Overall, it paints a comprehensive picture of the many aspects of the worldwide maker community. The video below provides an overview of the exhibition:

[vimeo w=613&h=345]

Overall, the whole presentation was a celebration of the maker community and those in it. The hall was filled when I was there with crowds of interested and engaged onlookers, with a line waiting to get in. Between the presentation at the highest level of British museum curation and the viewer participation, it would be hard not to see that the efforts of makers worldwide are striking a chord with the public. Although the exhibit itself is closed, the catalog is still available, which has a summary of the works and the participating artists.

CRAFT: POW Cross-Stitch at the V&A

12 thoughts on “The Power of Making at the V&A

  1. This exhibition was wonderful. So many interesting things, from the wire gorilla sculpture at the entrance to the wooden mech. It was great to see the various 3D printers up close instead of just reading about them (would have been nice to have a live demo). Even my two teenage sons fond lots of interest in there which was a bonus. Shame it had to end.

  2. A really good exhibition marred by a terrible lack of information on each exhibit. I understand an exhibition designer wanting to minimise explanations and let the objects speak for themselves but I wanted to know so much more. Even a QR code with a link to a deeper information for Android or iPhone would have been good. The catalogue didn’t say much more.

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Biomolecular cryptologist, robotics hacker, bad skateboarder and all-around mad artist.

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