It’s been a real joy to see Dundee celebrating the opening of its stunning Victoria and Albert Museum, designed by Kengo Kuma. While the building has raised some questions, it chimes so well with the nautical heritage of the city while also being an engineering tour de force.
Dundee and much of Scotland appear rather excited… and so they should be. There has been little to celebrate culturally in the northern lands in recent years, so this wonderful project really lifts the spirit.
It was nice to see Glasgow band Primal Scream performing at the opening and, with reference to Glasgow, I am especially drawn to the restored Charles Rennie Mackintosh Oak Room from the Ingram Street Tea Rooms in the museum. This is a ‘lost’ Mackintosh work reputed to be the prelude to the destroyed Glasgow School of Art Library. The Oak Room and the recent restoration of the Willow Tea Rooms in Glasgow are counterpoints of hope to the otherwise unmitigated disaster of the Glasgow School of Art.
The V&A is part of the Dundee Waterfront, a visionary 30 year town planning project, now half way through, and bearing fruit for its city of around 140,000 people.
Time to drive up the M74, M8, M90 and have a look!
Photo by Ronnie Macdonald