In an official opening ceremony Their Royal Highnesses, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge opened the new V&A Dundee design museum. This new and very important museum is the first ever dedicated design museum in Scotland. Although the new state-of-the-art facility is proudly Scottish, the museum is dedicated to celebrating design from around the world.
Furthermore, the V&A Dundee is the only other V&A museum anywhere in the world outside London. In its mission statement, the institution stated that their aim is to explore Scotland’s design heritage – its past, present and future.
The original V&A was established in 1852 and is today regarded as the number one museum of art and design in the world. This exceptional institution is part of the five founding members of the new V&A Dundee. The other founding members include the University of Dundee,
Abertay University, the Dundee City Council and Scottish Enterprise. Through the remarkable support given by these members, the new centre will ensure that design education and inspiration will be centre-stage in this important part of Scotland.
Designed by renowned award-winning Japanese architects Kengo Kuma & Associates the building in itself is a stunning work of art. The blend of contemporary design and traditional Japanese design has resulted in a unique and fascinating structure. The building is a harmonious blend of simplicity with extraordinary complex design.
Kuma’s vision for V&A Dundee is that it will be a welcoming space for everyone to visit, enjoy and socialise in – a ‘living room for the city’ – and a way of reconnecting the city to its historic River Tay waterfront. Along with V&A Dundee, Kuma is involved in a number of large, ongoing projects, including art centres in Besançon and Granada.
When in Scotland, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge is known as the
The Earl and Countess of Strathearn. The Royal couple arrived in Dundee on the morning of the opening where they were met with a throng of crowds waiting for what the British Royals do best – the Royal walk-about. Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Cambridge and her husband Prince William spent quite some time meeting and chatting to people in the crowd.
Although the couple was there in their Royal capacity, it was a little bit more personal for the Duchess as she the V&A Museum is one of her patronages. Following the official opening, Their Royal Highnesses spent some time to meet employees from the Dundee Michelin factory.
The Duchess of Cambridge’s Speech at the opening of the V&A Dundee
William and I are so pleased to be back here in Dundee to celebrate the opening of this wonderful museum today. Thank you so much for inviting us.
Last February, I was delighted to become Patron of The V&Ain London. Now, nearly a year later, I’m thrilled to be standing in a brand new V&A: one which has been built for the city of Dundee and for Scotland, and which is already picking up international awards. In its first four months alone, it welcomed over three-hundred and sixty-thousand visitors – a truly remarkable feat.
Walking around this world-class space, it’s easy to see how Scotland’s first dedicated design museum is already inspiring the next generation, by providing a new learning space for discovery.
I have been captivated by the breath-taking architecture and the sheer range of design on display.
But most of all I’ve been moved by the passion of the people who work here, and the dedication of all those who have helped make this important project to succeed.
I believe we should celebrate all our leading galleries, museums, and cultural centres playing a greater role in communities, not just in London, but up and down the country too. The cultural riches of the UK belong to all people of the UK.
This is what V&A Dundee has achieved. The partners involved in this project from the local area, Scotland, and the UK more broadly all deserve enormous credit for the way you have collaborated to make this happen.
I hope that this Museum will serve as an inspiration to others, by showing how great things can be achieved when different communities all pull together. With this thought in mind, I am pleased to declare V&A Dundee ‘officially’ open.
I wish you all every success for the future.
For more information on the V&A Dundee click here.
Images: Kensington Palace