The V&A Museum in London is opening a new museum next year specially for Scottish design, in the coastal city Dundee, the fourth largest city of Scotland. The huge building on the river Tay is the outcome of an international competition won by the Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, who is also designing Tokyo’s Olympic stadium for 2020. The V&A is also one of the founding institutions of a new design museum, Design Society, which is to open this October in the Chinese city of Shenzen.
From Isle of Skye through the Highlands and on to Glasgow. The city has it all: Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the most impressive street art mural I have ever seen, a piano bar in a horse trailer and lots of tipsy women with too short skirts and too high heels. Then back home to the wedding of my dear stepson Bouke and his wife Daniëlle and the craziness of the Gay Parade!
Elke dinsdag ben ik voor het nieuws van 11 uur te gast in het KRO NCRV radioprogramma De Ochtend op Radio 1 om actuele ontwikkelingen op het gebied van architectuur en stedelijk leven te bespreken. Vandaag: de leefstraat. Dit is het nieuwste experiment waarmee bewoners de straat terugveroveren op de auto. Die ruimte gebruiken ze om weer contact met elkaar krijgen. Parking place wordt social space.
In the Scottish countryside, the good old red phone booth now houses a library, or a defibrillator, or a town’s oral history – and sometimes even a phone. And on the far reaches of the Isle of Skye we meet Donald Murdie, who tells us about his life as a ‘crofter’ and his fears of Brexit.
This week I fed my interest in polar exploration by visiting ‘The Discovery’, the ship of Robert Scott, who sailed in it on an unfortunate polar expedition to the Antarctic. I also got a peek into the V&A Dundee, the very first museum for Scottish design and in the studio of the fashion designer Katie Gibson of Gibson & Birkbeck. I talked to Neil Ross of the Highlands and Islands Enterprise about community building in rural Scotland and discovered that Scotland has a lot of windfarms. And yes, we went skinny dipping in our hottub in our cottage garden.
The pleasures of travel in Scotland: endless kinds of local beer, smoked fish and produce from the farm through a vending machine in the wall. History is never far away here, with Graham Fagen’s melancholy ‘Slave’s Lament’ in the National Portrait Gallery and one of Scotland’s earlier attempts at independence in Arbroath.