Saturday, 15 May.
I’ve been looking forward to this day for several weeks… Recently things have got very busy with work and church and volunteer stuff that we (the wife and I) have had to start scheduling days out weeks in advance. She’s clever, and knows that if she can produce a destination that is: a little bit worky, a bit interesting, and somewhere in the centre of London, then she’s got a good hope that it’ll happen.
So we decided upon going to the Design Museum on the Southbank. On a two for one offer. :)
The Southbank was dotted around with decorated plastic elephants to highlight the danger of extinction, the pictures with the patterns show some of the detail. And I have to say I have always found London is a very picturesque, angular, beautiful city to take photos of. The mix of old with new is especially stimulating.
I expected to go there and see some interesting things, which happened, but what I didn’t expect was to come away from there feeling as nourished as I did. And it turns out, she felt the same way. It took us over a hour to go through a single room – not because the room was huge or had too many items to take in – but because each item held enough interest for a person to want to take the time to read the note, view the object, watch the video, contemplate what they were thinking about and finally come to the conclusion that if this was available, “yes I’d buy that for my living room because it’s beautiful.”
But to go only that far would be shortsighted. These objects are not just designed to be beautiful, but also to carry out a function or purpose, which in itself carries another sense of beauty.
We did no research before going to the museum. We did not know what exhibitions were currently being held, but we assumed that it would be good no matter what it would be. A large portion of the museum was focussed squarely on “sustainability.” I think some of the items were more of a loose interpretation of this idea, but some hit the nail right on the head.
In short, sometimes I think we can get so caught up in the work of work, (even though we enjoy it) that we forget how great the privilege and opportunity to both affect people’s lives and for the self-expression afforded by this thing we call design. We can lose sight of why we love it, and then we catch another glimpse of the reason – and we love it all the more.