It has been announced that Scotland’s first design museum is set to open to the public on 15 September 2018. The V&A Dundee will be the first and — for now — only V&A museum based outside London.
V&A Dundee is designed by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, the man behind the stadium for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, the Asakusa Culture and Tourism Center in Tokyo, the Nagasaki Prefectural Art Museum, Prostho Museum Research Center, Shizuoka International Garden and many more buildings.
The museum sits at the apex of a £1 billion transformation of Dundee’s former docklands, connecting the city of the present to its historical placement as a waterfront. V&A Dundee will be a centre for design for the nation and across the world, with permanent galleries displaying Scottish design and an international programme of exhibitions exploring international design. The Scottish Design Galleries will be free to visitors, and will include architecture, ceramics, engineering, fashion, furniture, healthcare, jewellery, textiles and video game design.
V&A Dundee is the product of a partnership between the V&A, Dundee City Council, the University of Dundee, Abertay University and Scottish Enterprise. While it is founded in partnership with the V&A London, the Dundee museum is to be run independently by Philip Long, the Director of V&A Dundee. In a statement to press Long said: “After many years of planning for V&A Dundee, we are absolutely thrilled to announce the date of the new museum’s opening.
“In just eight months we will be opening the doors and welcoming our first visitors. V&A Dundee is set to be a vital new cultural organisation for Dundee, the UK and beyond, helping to change understanding of just how important design and creativity are to people’s lives. We are enormously grateful to all our supporters for helping to make this happen.
“V&A Dundee brings something new to Scotland. It is the country’s first museum dedicated to design, which visitors will be able to experience and get involved with in very many ways. Particularly important is that the new museum enables major V&A exhibitions to be seen more widely by more people across the UK. So I am especially excited that part of V&A Dundee’s opening programme will be the breath-taking exhibition Ocean Liners: Speed & Style, the first of many ambitious exhibitions at V&A Dundee that will show how our lives have been – and always will be – shaped by design.”
The V&A’s Director Tristram Hunt added: “The opening of V&A Dundee this year will be a remarkable moment for Dundee, the V&A and the UK. The V&A was founded to champion British design, showcase the greatest works of creative ingenuity and enrich everyone’s imagination.
“V&A Dundee will build on our deep connections to the story of Scottish design and its meaning for modern practitioners, sharing our collections and world-class exhibitions. This is a cultural milestone for Dundee and a new opportunity for the UK to show the world how art and design can educate and inspire.
“V&A Dundee is being developed with support from the Scottish Government, Heritage Lottery Fund, Dundee City Council, the UK Government, Creative Scotland, Scottish Enterprise, University of Dundee, Abertay University and many trusts and private donors.”