Thirty objects have been chosen to show trends or mark events that have had an impact and that, in some ways, might represent life in Denmark over the 17 years since the beginning of this century.
Fifteen objects are from the collection of the museum - important because it makes the point that this is a national museum that is not just about a distant or remote past but is relevant now and looks at the full social and political history of the country through the artefacts it collects because history can be as close as yesterday.
Fifteen objects were selected by a committee from objects suggested by the public. Again this is important because academic staff might feel that they are ‘across’ the major trends of contemporary life and culture but it always helps to get a broad viewpoint. After all, the idea of diversity or at least open discussion about diversity is itself an aspect of life in most modern democracies.
Very few of the objects are what would be defined as design pieces - if your definition of design follows what is seen in design museums or design magazines - but again this exhibition reinforces the most general principle that all man-made objects are designed. They have to be, even if the design is kept in the mind as work starts, and any commercial object that is industrially produced has to be designed - has to be contrived. A manufactured object might not be beautiful or it might not be good design but designed it is.
the exhibition continues at Nationalmuseet / National Museum of Denmark
Prinsens Palæ, Ny Vestergade 10, 1471 Copenhagen K
the exhibition opened in November 2017 but I failed to spot it in an upper gallery until recently when I visited the museum with friends who were staying and they wanted to explore and see as much as possible in what was, for them, a new place … it just shows that familiarity breeds laziness