I went to see the exhibition being held at the Abertay University Library today. It features the six designs shortlisted for the building in which Dundee’s Victoria and Albert Museum branch will be housed in. You can check them out in detail here
My favourite before I went to see it was the design by Japan based Kengo Kuma
The lines in this design really appeal to me. For those who know Dundee, wouldn’t the Tay reflect under all of these layered slats beautifully? I still really like it, the model was beautiful and I love the asymmetry of it.
I think I have been won over a bit more by the ‘Bluebell’, designed by New York based architects, REX. This design has such a wonderful reflective quality to it, and the way they were planning the interior really appealed as well. The night photographs of it were lovely and it would be the sort of iconic building Dundee could really do with.
The Edinburgh based firm, Sutherland Hussey, disappointed a bit. To me it looks like a lot of the buildings currently on the Waterfront, which Dundee is looking to move away from. The Norwegian design was also a bit to understated for me. Its a wonderful idea to have the museum actually floating on the water, but not on such a small scale, it just didn’t make enough of a visual impact for me. I have heard people liken the Stephen Holl design to a power station. I thought it was actually really good in the model, the published image does not show it off at its best. The inside of it reminded me of the interior of Tate Modern with stairways continuously snaking up the very top galleries, with the option of stopping off on the way. Simple, but practical. I think this would be my third favourite, because again its a statement and aesthetically pleasing (ish!).
The strangest one I saved for last.
I mean, its a showstopper, isn’t it? But its just so not Dundee! I kept hearing people say it was like a spaceship yesterday. Its a bit of a love or hate thing, and I’m really not into it. Too much too soon for the Waterfront I think, and it doesn’t say ‘Dundee’ or ‘V&A’ to me at all! Each to their own though!
So, what do you think? I’m backing REX and Kengo Kuma, I think either of them would be wonderful. I feel like a bit of a traitor for not liking any of the European ones, but I can’t help it!
There is a seventh design though, and I really can’t miss it out. Click here