Visiting the New V&A Road Quarter
15th of July 2017
I've been following the development of the new V&A extension by AL_A architects across the last few years, and as soon as it was announced to have been completed I knew I had to visit. I'm greeted by the the Aston Webb Screen, a stone colonnade erected in 1909 to hide the original museum’s boiler rooms. The boilers have been cleared away in the renovation, leaving behind a space age courtyard framed in the classical colonnade still bearing the shrapnel marks left during the blitz in WWII. An angular café pavilion rises up on the left hand side of the square, furnished with aluminium tables and chairs by Moroso, commissioned specifically for this project. The pavilion is paired with the translucent roof of the new Sainsbury gallery on the right. The tension created by the juxtaposition of two distinct eras, the new and old, was unmistakable. It felt distinctly like an expression for the present moment, where old and new values collide into each other. It seemed to echo our newfound awareness of history made true by technology but also boldly setting foot into our unknown, but promising future.
Read Dezeen's article about the new V&A extension here