V&A Dundee

Night Fever to reopen V&A Dundee

A UK-exclusive exhibition on the joyful history of nightclub design will reopen V&A Dundee on Saturday 1 May

Night Fever: Designing Club Culture is the first large-scale examination of the relationship between club culture and design, charting the evolution of nightclubs from the 1960s to today. Tickets are on sale now.

Nightclubs are spaces for adventure and escape, and have always encouraged experimental and radical design, from New York’s Studio 54 to Manchester’s Haçienda.

From Italy to New York, Paris, Manchester, London, Beirut and Berlin, and into everyone’s homes today through online streaming, the exhibition charts how nightclub design has changed and developed.

The exhibition will include a new section on Scotland’s unique and distinct club culture, including legendary club nights in Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Paisley, exploring how the Scottish club scene holds closer ties to the music and influences of Chicago, Detroit and Europe than London clubs.

The exhibition celebrates these critical cultural spaces at a very important moment, a year on from the first coronavirus lockdown, as we all look to a brighter future where everyone can come back together, to dance and to enjoy shared public experiences once again.

Night Fever: Designing Club Culture at V&A Dundee is supported by players of People's Postcode Lottery.

Leonie Bell, Director of V&A Dundee, said: “Design is fundamental to our lives, it’s a form of creativity that everyone engages with every day. At V&A Dundee we are committed to championing and exploring the many ways that design helps us and brings joy.

Night Fever: Designing Club Culture is a perfect exhibition to reopen V&A Dundee with. Nightclubs and dancehalls are precious cultural spaces that often play a pivotal role in our lives. Night Fever explores the history of nightclub design, looking at how this has changed from Italy in the 1960s right through to everyone’s living rooms today with online streaming of club nights.

“We can’t wait to welcome our visitors back to enjoy the new exhibition, or simply to appreciate the calm sanctuary of Kengo Kuma’s architecture.”

Laura Chow, Head of Charities from People’s Postcode Lottery, said: “V&A Dundee has had a huge impact on local communities and Scottish cultural life since well before it opened in 2018, and I’m delighted that players of People's Postcode Lottery have supported the museum for seven years.

“This UK-exclusive exhibition is hugely exciting as we all look forward to brighter times ahead, and it is the perfect time to explore how important design and culture are to our lives and wellbeing.”

Key nightclubs featured in the exhibition include:

  • The Electric Circus, New York, 1967
  • Space Electronic, Florence, 1969
  • Studio 54, New York, 1977
  • Paradise Garage, New York, 1977
  • The Haçienda, Manchester, 1982
  • Area, New York, 1983
  • Sub Club, Glasgow, 1987 – present
  • Kinky Gerlinky, London, 1989
  • The Rhumba Club, Scotland, 1991 – present
  • B018, Beirut, 1998
  • Berghain, Berlin, 2004
  • Ministry of Sound II, London, 2015
  • The Mothership, Detroit, 2015

Nightclubs are an example of a total designed experience, employing architecture, art, fashion, graphics, lighting, performance and sound to create an immersive sensory experience where design, music and technology meet on the dancefloor.

Night Fever: Designing Club Culture is a UK-exclusive exhibition at V&A Dundee, from 1 May 2021 to 9 January 2022.

Developed by the Vitra Design Museum and ADAM – Brussels Design Museum, it includes films, photography, posters, flyers, and fashion, as well as a light and music installation.

Michael Clark: Cosmic Dancer will now run at V&A Dundee from 26 February 2022 to 4 September 2022. This is the first ever major exhibition on Michael Clark, the groundbreaking Scottish dancer and choreographer, curated and organised by Barbican Centre, London.

A number of measures are in place across the museum to ensure a safe, welcoming and inspiring experience for visitors and staff alike.

All visitors now need to book free tickets to enter the museum, as part of the essential steps to keep visitors safe and to ensure physical distancing. Those free tickets can also be booked at www.vam.ac.uk/dundee

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