29 November 2009

V&A at Dundee : Making it Happen

The University of Dundee is at the forefront of the V&A at Dundee initiative. The project aims to establish a cultural portal at the heart of the city’s waterfront development with input from the Victoria & Albert Museum, a move which would complement the strong creative movement which already exists in Dundee.

This unique opportunity would build on Dundee’s growing reputation as a centre of excellence for contemporary art and design, and help provide a focus on the cultural activities the city can offer.  A two-phase independent feasibility study, commissioned by Scottish Enterprise and Dundee City Council has concluded that a presence for the Victoria & Albert Museum in Dundee could regenerate the city centre, attract up to 250,000 visitors a year, create up to 900 jobs and inject millions of pounds into the local economy.

The project took a huge step forward in August 2009 when Michael Russell MSP, Minister for Culture, External Affairs and the Constitution, announced the Scottish Government’s intention to support the V&A at Dundee. By committing a significant financial investment for the project, ministers hope to emulate the success of the Guggenheim Museum which opened a branch in Bilbao in 1997, a move which played a major part in the economic regeneration of that city. 

This ground-breaking venture will be delivered by a partnership of local bodies —Dundee City Council, Scottish Enterprise, the Universities of Dundee and Abertay —and the V&A, the world’s Number One museum of art and design.

V&A at Dundee will be housed in a world-class building on a stunning waterfront site. An international competition for the building will be launched in early 2010, and the quality of the building and the creativity it will unleash will drive forward Dundee’s renaissance as an exemplar European small city.

It will do three things:

·       attract visitors to international quality travelling  and permanent exhibitions in the creative arts put together by the V&A and others;
·       create a rich educational resource for researchers and students of all ages; and
·       provide a nucleus and launchpad for applied artists and creative businesses in Scotland.

You can help by showing your support for the V&A at Dundee and the wide range of cultural initiatives taking place within the city.

17 November 2009


Scottish based Roy Shearer is the face behind this work.

Niftymitter is a short range FM transmitter based on the open source hardware design by Tetsuo Kogawa, housed within a cardboard body, with a variety of options for hacking. The transmitter is tiny and handy for small scale radio broadcasts, building a distributed PA system for performances, linking your personal audio player to your car radio, or for general audio experimentation.

Be a tester!

In December 2009 Roy will be sending out a hacking kit to 6 people and you could be one of them! The kit will contain the stable build of Niftymitter v0.2x and a whole host of bits and bobs to add on to it to adapt its function and behaviour. You don’t have to have any technical knowledge or interest to take part, merely some curiosity for Niftymitter or for broadcasting sound wirelessly. I would prefer it if you don’t know me personally so, will give preference to those living farther away, but in the UK. If you are interested, email me at info(at)openthing(dot)org with some info about yourself.

Roy is one of 3 awardees of the 2009 Crafts Creative Development bursary at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee, Scotland in partnership with the Scottish Arts Council. The purpose of the bursaries is to support individuals to create new work through awards of up to £10,000. The work created through the bursary scheme will be part of an exhibition at the 2010 Craft Festival Scotland organised by the Past, Present and Future Craft Practice research team.