Currently running at the V&A in London, UK, Ocean Liners: Speed & Style is a new exhibition that re-imagines the golden age of ocean travel and is the first international exhibition devoted to the subject. Exploring the design and cultural impact of the ocean liner on an international scale, it covers all aspects of ship design from ground-breaking engineering, architecture and interiors to the fashion and lifestyle aboard.
Hosted within Gallery 39 and the North Court, visitors embark on a grand voyage through five key themes; Promotion, Politics of Style, Engineering, Life on Board and The Metaphor of the Liner. As visitors journey across these exhibition spaces they encounter an extensive showcase of over 250 exhibits including paintings, sculpture and ship models in addition to objects from shipyards, wall panels, furniture, fashion, textiles, photographs and posters. Film also plays a key role throughout the exhibition, showcasing everything from the dining rooms and ballrooms on board elegant liners to a moving chronicle of the strength and skill of Clyde shipbuilders.
Sound effects follow the visitor throughout the exhibition, from the noise of the engine room to the din of seagulls accompanying a huge projection of the blue sea with a liner moving slowly across the horizon. The exhibition ends with one of the most memorable items, a wooden carving from the Titanic that seems to be floating in a pool of water thanks to the clever use of two projectors creating a visual projection of the sea.
Experience delivery company Sysco were engaged by Empty SL to deliver the audiovisual installations across the exhibition. Working closely with Flemming Associates and Casson Mann, Sysco helped to develop innovative design concepts that would translate the different themes into submersive and tangible experiences. According to the company: “The resulting layers of audio and visual interpretation beautifully combine with the exhibits, setworks and artefacts to create a dramatic, decadent and memorable exhibition.”
Following their recent work together on Winnie-the-Pooh: Exploring a Classic, also at the V&A, Sysco once again turned to VDC Trading, which supplied audio cabling from the Contractor Series for the project.
Cain Cookson, Head of UK Sales at VDC Trading, said: “Ocean Liners is already proving to be an incredibly popular exhibition and it was great to work with the team at Sysco once again to deliver such an informative and striking experience for visitors.”