V&A Dundee is spreading a message of hope to city citizens as the attraction prepares to re-open to the public on Thursday.
A large-scale installation by Scottish fashion designer Christopher Kane has been installed on the façade of the waterfront building, urging people to “Be open to the Joy you deserve”.
The artwork on the River Tay-facing side of the building is part of the Now Accepting Contactless: Design in a Global Pandemic exhibition which will be staged when the doors re-open following lockdown.
Kane’s artwork will be seen by people driving across the Tay Road Bridge into Dundee.
It was created for Dazed’s #AloneTogether campaign in April this year to support London’s Barts Charity emergency Covid-19 appeal, involving 33 artists and designers.
Now Accepting Contactless brings together objects revealing the many ways designers have used their skills in the crisis, from medical illustrations that helped visualise the virus to DIY hacks encouraging social distancing to help people stay safe.
Christopher Kane said: “In these unprecedented times, Be open to the Joy you deserve takes on an even deeper meaning as a talisman of hope and good karma.
“We hope this mantra will be a positive affirmation to the people of Dundee, and serve as a reminder to be open to the feeling of joy even in these challenging times.”
V&A Dundee curator, Kirsty Hassard said: “Christopher Kane’s message of joy at V&A Dundee is for everyone as we adapt to life during a global pandemic.
“Designers and communities have adapted to the unprecedented challenges of this year, creating innovative solutions to enhance our resilience in the world of medical care, adapting public spaces, highlighting social inequalities, and protecting the wellbeing of individuals during lockdown.”
The exhibition includes a focus on the Scrub Hub at Dundee University’s Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design, which brought together volunteers and students to create a thousand of sets of scrubs for frontline medical staff.
It also features Alyssa Eckhart and Dan Higgins’ visualisation of Covid-19 which gave the virus an identity that was then translated globally.
V&A visitor bathrooms will all feature Wash Your Lyrics posters behind each sink and the lighter side of lockdown will include bespoke Quarantine Bread Baking Barbie created by Instagram artist Tonya Ruiz.
Door handles across the museum have also been adapted using 3D printing technology so they can be opened with an arm rather than a hand.
An outdoor playscape has also been created for the museum re-opening, which will also see the work of Mary Quant covered in its first major fashion exhibition.
All visitors need to book a free, timed entry ticket in advance at www.vam.ac.uk/dundee