When someone tall, dark (with a tint of ginge) and handsome asked if I fancied meeting at the weekend for a trip to the cinema or a furniture exhibition, my reply was ‘Furniture exhibition? I’m in!’.
That might have blown my chances of pretending to accidentally brush hands in the popcorn box, faking a yawn and leaving my arm behind the shoulders or jumping at a scary bit and ending up on his lap (darn, that’s all my cinema smooth moves exposed!) … but the V&A is kind of beautiful.
I have only been there once or twice before at a late night opening, where my 3 images taken were of the tea rooms, the toilets and a full moon.
You can learn so much more about someone from a walk around a museum.
A reconstructed staircase from Salisbury Cathedral? Beautiful. He was once an altar boy.
And his parents’ house is full of ‘one of them, one of those, loads of these…’ (much pointing as we walked up to the Dr Susan Weber Gallery).
A replica of Michaelangelo’s David? Beautiful. Yes, I have seen the original in Florence… hasn’t he got a great bottom?
‘Isn’t it great that he established himself in furniture history and then made a massive second career for himself as a stripper.’ – Referring to Thomas Chipenndale of course! HA!
Pots of English breakfast tea, lemon drizzle cake and scones later, we were asked to leave. Not because I had been told off for touching the exhibits but because they were closing.
We continued the afternoon at Skandium in Knightsbridge indulging in more furniture porn and pretending that The Borrower’s Mansion would be filled with Carl Hansen desks and Fritz Hansen sofas and picking out things for our future ski chalet.
Just when the day couldn’t go any better, we met Ricky in his immaculate three piece tweed and tortoise shell glasses. He wouldn’t disclose who his tailor was, but did dispense his in-depth knowledge on the desk I was admiring (ok I admit I was sniffing the drawers). It all became blurry. It climaxed with the two gentlemen discussing Eames’ early creation of leg splints for the American Navy during World War II and veins coming through the resin…
I loved it.
Ricky (new friend) was delighted we’d been to the V&A’s furniture exhibition and offered to talk us through more pieces. Another day though. Closing time. We were thrown out again.
We were very smug with finding our new friend. What luck!
Then as we skipped home, he said the words that surely every girl wants to hear… ‘Let’s be Museum Buddies!’
Well, now I just need a pen friend!
Some surprise modern pieces from the V&A that I was drawn to:
Fractal Table II (2007, revised in 2009) designed by Gernot Oberfell, Jan Wertel and Matthias Bar.
Derived from studies into fractal growth patterns. Treelike stems grow into smaller branches until they get very dense towards the top.
Chair Bench (2012) by Gitta Gschwendtner made by Sitting Form Chairmakers Coventry. Perfect seating arrangement for a meeting and a jug of Pimms. I’ll be popping in to the workshop next time I’m in Coventry for sure!
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