‘SIT DOWN: Seating for Kids‘ is the V&A Museum of Childhood‘s big exhibition of design for kids, exploring the vast array of seating used by children in their everyday lives. The exhibition invites visitors to consider what makes a successful seat.
SIT DOWN: Seating for Kids, 6th February – 5th September 2010
V&A MUSEUM OF CHILDHOOD
Cambridge Heath Road, London E2 9PA (020 8983 5200)
SIT DOWN delves into the world of children’s seating with classic and more unusual examples. After centuries of traditional seating forms following accepted design conventions, the 20th Century witnessed an explosion of creative solutions to the idea of seating, including those for children.
The exploration of new forms, materials, and production methods, as well as technological developments, resulted in more colourful and innovative seating designs for children.
The exhibition uses the term ‘seating’ in its broadest sense, encompassing a wide range of functional and playful objects designed to be used primarily for sitting upon. This includes chairs, benches, sofas, bean bags, ride-on toys, potties, highchairs, and play equipment.
The exhibition asks visitors to consider: What is a seat? Who is a seat for? How is a seat made? When is a seat not just for sitting on? Is it comfortable? Is it stylish? Is it easy to use?
Visitors are encouraged to vote for their favourite chair. Furniture designers should sit up – they could learn a lot from the brutal honesty of the young demographic visiting this show.
Parents take note: on Saturday 6th February, they will be staging a Musical Chairs Marathon. Furthermore, there are plenty of February half-term activities (15th-19th February) to keep your kids occupied.
Images – from top (courtesy of V&A Images unless otherwise stated): Eames Elephant by Charles & Ray Eames (image courtesy of Vitra); Wire Mesh Chair by Harry Bertoia; bObles by Bolette and Louise Blaedel; Booster seat from Cosco, USA; Spotty by Peter Murdoch; Polyprop chair by Robin Day.