The Victoria and Albert Museum is perhaps the most underrated museum in London, at least from an American tourist point of view. There is so much good stuff to see and do in London that it often gets pushed to the bottom of the list, and then falls off the list as museum fatigue sets in. One of its many charms are the unusual Christmas trees they commission from artists. Past trees have been covered in crystals and fans, and one year the only decoration was one large angel.
This year’s tree is elegant and lovely. It is the creation of Danish designers Sophie Nielsen and Rolf Knudsen. Their partnership Studio Roso seeks to make work that “radiates the ephemeral nature of our environment.”
The “tree” is over 12 feet tall and is constructed of 1500 strands of elastic cord. Each individual strand was bundled into groups of ten, and within the bundles geometric shapes are suspended. The shapes reference both Christmas tree ornaments and “the crystalline structure of snowflakes and icicles.” The shadows that are created within the tree also reference the structure of a snowflake.
The artist statement says they were inspired by the craft of bobbin lacing, which is used to create traditional Christmas decorations, but I think it is also reminiscent of Himmeli.
All images from the Studio Roso website.