Set the agenda – Red Setter’s favourite museums and galleries to explore in August
It’s August. It’s official ‘be a tourist’ season. With that in mind, this month rather than celebrating specific exhibitions, we asked the team to tell us their favourite design institutes and galleries around the world, along with the ones that are on their travel bucket lists.
Buckle up for a museum and gallery tour of global hot spots with venues in Asia, New York, Brazil and Berlin making our list.
Red Dot Design Museum, Singapore. Credit: Red Dot Design Museum
Like many of our team, Account Director Sian Disson is a huge fan of the V&A for an ever-stimulating diet of cultural goodies.
Why Sian loves it:
“There are always new exhibits to explore; the architecture is beautiful; I love watching the artists sketching in the sculpture hall; and I never leave without something from their expertly curated shop. It’s the perfect place to while away the afternoon (and I literally used to take dates here to see how we would work out!)”
Sian isn’t the only one to have a love for the V&A. Account Executive Miriam Chumbley also loves the diversity of its exhibitions.
Why Miriam loves it:
“One moment you are amongst centuries old sculptures and the next you are immersed in the intricate minds of designers behind fashion houses Christian Dior or Alexander McQueen – the museum offers an iconic blend of history and contemporary culture.
“There’s also something about the building itself with it’s almost endless, secretive corridors that open to astoundingly huge interior halls that make you feel as if you’re discovering a monumental hidden treasure before anyone else. The John Madejski courtyard at the heart of the museum with an oval pool and lawns is a beautiful spot and an architectural design attraction in itself.”
The V&A Museum. Credit: V&A Images
Editorial consultant Anna Richardson Taylor has a few favourites, the iconic Vitra Design Museum in Germany and the Comic Strip Museum in Brussels.
Why Anna loves them:
“The Vitra Design Museum – the interiors and product design geek in me loved it! I also love the Comic Strip Museum in Brussels – one of my favourite places to go when growing up in the city. Not only is it about comic books and their artists, but it is housed in an Art Nouveau masterpiece designed by Victor Horta (previously textile department store).”
The Vitra Design Museum
Editorial consultant Emily Gosling recommends some hidden gems around the world including the Stedeliijk in Amsterdam, Alvar Aalto House in Helsinki and Zabludovicz in London.
Why Emily loves them:
“The Stedelijk in Amsterdam is an incredible building and always has really interesting shows, with a great approach to showing innovative work. It manages to show the intersection of design and fine art in a way that I’ve not seen many other places do well.
“The Alvar Aalto house in Helsinki is like a museum that’s also a house – it’s incredible to see his work in situ, and the location is gorgeous.”
And closer to home is the Zabludovicz, in London. “There’s a dedicated (padded!) room for VR works and I’ve seen some amazing stuff here. It’s a very digital/video art focused gallery,” she says.
The Aalto House. Credit: Alvar Aalto Museum
Senior Account Director Gemma Maxey is a fan of the Museo National Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid and has great memories of her visit.
Why Gemma loves it:
“I visited the gallery a few years ago. La Guernica by Picasso is one of the most famous masterpieces there and I was blown away by the sheer size of it. There’s lots of Salvador Dali featured there too, another of my fav artists, so it was a real draw for me.”
Guernica, Pablo Picasso. Credit: Museo Reina Sofia
Communications Director Vicky Stoakes is long-time fan of London’s Design Museum.
Why Vicky loves it:
“I have a real love for the Design Museum – what it stands for, what it is and its history as part of my own. I lived five minutes from the museum in its original site by Tower Bridge and attended many events there, for pleasure and luckily for work. I was part of the PR team that celebrated Mini’s 40th birthday with a big media event there and five celebrity designed Minis, including by David Bowie, Kate Moss and Paul Smith. That was a night to remember! (Check out Bowie’s mirror plated Mini!).
“I love how the museum has evolved and is doing brilliant work in its new location in Kensington, constantly championing design and opening people’s eyes to designers who might otherwise be forgotten.”
Design Museum, Shad Thames 1989. Credit: Design Museum
The Top 3 Bucket List Venues:
- Top of Emily’s list is the Poster House in New York. She says: “I’m not sure I’m aware of any other museums dedicated only to posters, and they’ve had some really great shows.”
- Top of Anna’s list is the Sao Paolo Museum of Image and Sound. She says, “I was going to visit a friend in Sao Paolo and really wanted to explore the design scene of the city including this museum. Unfortunately the trip had to be cancelled, so it has been on my bucket list ever since…” (she’d also love to visit the esteemed Red Dot Design museums in Asia.)
- Top of Vicky’s list is the Bauhaus in Berlin. She says, “When we had our Red Setter trip to Berlin a few years ago, it was top of everyone’s list…but it was disappointedly undergoing renovation (and still is). I’d love to go back to Berlin just to get my Bauhaus fix!”