V&A Museum – Engineering Season and Hip Hop robots! Review by Issy

This is a guest blog, by Issy, who has written an excellent review of her visit to the V&A Museum during May half-term 2016. Issy took part in Pop-up Performance – the Dance of the Robot and visited Elytra Filament Pavilion, part of the V&A Engineering Season.

“The V&A is one of my favourite museums as it has such a variety of displays from film and theatre, fashion, photography, art from different eras and parts of the world. The event I want to tell you about however was something I didn’t expect to see – hip hop robots!Issy Elyra 1 mini

As part of their Engineering Season, there is the Elytra Filament Pavilion insulation in the garden till the 6th of November 2016. It was inspired by the forewing shells of flying beetles known as Elytra, giving it its name, and constructed by a robot/machine that weaves the cell fibres. It was made in Stuttgart, Germany in a fabrication hall and then transported, with the machine/robot, to the museum in pieces ready to be constructed at the museum.Issy Elytra 2

I thought that it was an interesting and imaginative sight as I had never seen anything like it before. It made me think of a hovering space ship because of its colours and shapes and it made it look very futuristic.  I thought the view from under it was the best as you could really see the structure and the parts overlapping each other to make the shapes.

On the day I went there was a live event to celebrate and explain the Elytra Filament to children in a way they could understand and enjoy. Under the canopy there was a group of hiphop artists who called themselves a hip hop robot group.  They explained it in a simple way and then they demonstrated and taught us a simple robot dance set to hip hop music.  The younger children were really enjoying it and getting into it.  It was ideal for children because it was interactive, energetic and fun and made you want to find out more about the Elytra. It was good to see how the V&A had linked different art forms to the engineering theme.

Issy Elytra 3 mini

Issy Elytra 4 mini

Here I am about to participate!

Here I am about to participate!

I would definitely recommend you visit before the end of the engineering season and take a walk in the gardens to see the Elytra, although there is always something amazing to be seen at the V&A and a visit whenever is always a treat!

By Isobel, age 12.”

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Issy Elytra 6 mini

Issy Elytra 7