The exhibit, which includes the painted girders and neon sign of the Kim Philby Bar ”â is part of a new display about iconic British design. Bosses at the museum ”â who are bracing themselves an influx of Olympic visitors ”â are also exhibiting Factory Record posters and New Order album covers by designer Peter Saville as examples of the best design in recent decades.
Speaking to the M.E.N, designer Ben, who has been responsible for the whole design of the museum exhibition, said the task of recreating the club had evoked strong memories. He said: “We have taken
elements that represent the design of the club, although the space is only a small fraction of the original. There are stripes on the columns, as well as black and white bollards, and we’ve recreated some of the signs. “Unfortunately, we’ve not had any original parts of the club, they were all sold off, so it’s all been done from scratch. “The space will represent the culture of the 80s and 90s and there will be pictures of the Face and ID magazines on display.” Although the Victoria and Albert normally houses more traditional exhibits, London-based Ben, who has gone on to design other iconic buildings and venues, said the Manchester nightspot deserved to take its place in the national gallery.
He added: “It was so influential. I’m, of course, hugely honoured that they chose the Hacienda as one of the items and that I was asked to work on the overall design. “I never dreamed when I took on the job 30 years ago that what I was designing would be something that people would be looking at today. “When Peter Saville suggested to Tony Wilson that I do the design, I thought it would just be a bit of work. But it has become this huge thing which never goes away. “I get calls in my office every week from design and architecture students who are doing projects about it.” The display in the gallery will also feature period music and footage from inside the club.
The Whitworth Street West nightclub was founded in 1982 by label boss Wilson, members of New Order, and their manager Rob Gretton. As well as being pivotal to the rave and acid music scene, it was also a live music venue used by acts James, Happy Mondays and on one occasion Madonna was filmed there for the Tube TV programme. During its 90s heyday, influential US magazine Newsweek named it as the world’s most famous nightclub Other classics of British designs which feature in the display include Morris Mini Minor, David Bowie album covers, and the ZX81 Spectrum computer. Museum director Martin Roth said: “As people around the world will be focussing on the UK in the summer of 2012 this is an ideal moment to showcase British innovation.” The exhibition, British Design 1948-2012, runs at the V&A Gallery from Saturday until August 12