The V&A’s ceramics collections are one of its greatest glories and unrivalled in the world. The galleries were purpose-built in 1909 and were refurbished and reconfigured by architects Stanton Williams in 2009. The display presents over 3,000 objects which tell the story of ceramics, from the earliest Chinese pottery to contemporary ceramic art.
We designed the gallery identity and interpretation graphics, working closely with architects Stanton Williams and the V&A curatorial team.
There is a sequence of seven connected galleries, each with an individual theme. At the heart of the display is a rigorous label information system which can be easily updated by the V&A. The labels are printed onto magnetic substrate which carefully integrates with the display cases. Large scale graphics, such as dates, are painted directly onto wall surfaces to provide narrative and aid navigation. Relief letters are inlaid into the ceiling cornicing listing the rich vocabulary of the ceramic process.
In the gallery devoted to materials and techniques, a unique piece of low-tech interactive furniture, ‘Basic Making’, explains the process of making ceramics. The display is designed to appeal to a family audience – engaging and educational without becoming over-simplistic.
ISTD International TypoGraphic Awards 2011 Premier Award