18 June – 20 October 2013
Memory Palace is a walk-in story that brings to life a new work of fiction by the author Hari Kunzru.
This narrative world is visualised through a series of commissions by 20 internationally acclaimed illustrators, graphic designers and typographers.
The story is set in a future London, hundreds of years after the world’s information infrastructure was wiped out by an immense magnetic storm. Technology and knowledge have been lost, and a dark age prevails. Nature has taken over the ruins of the old city and power has been seized by a group who enforce a life of extreme simplicity on all citizens. Recording, writing, collecting and art are outlawed.
The narrator of the story is in prison. He is accused of being a member of a banned sect, who has revived the ancient ‘art of memory’. They try to remember as much of the past as they can in a future where forgetting has been official policy for generations. The narrator uses his prison cell as his ‘memory palace’, the location for the things he has remembered: corrupted fragments and misunderstood details of things we may recognise from our time. He clings to his belief that without memory, civilisation is doomed.
The full list of practitioners are:
Âbäke, Peter Bil’ak, Alexis Deacon, Oded Ezer, Francesco Franchi, Isabel Greenberg, Hansje van Halem, Jim Kay, Johnny Kelly, Erik Kessels, Na Kim, Stuart Kolakovic, Frank Laws, Le Gun, Luke Pearson, Stefanie Posavec, Némo Tral, Henning Wagenbreth, Mario Wagner and Sam Winston
The exhibition takes place in the V&A’s Porter Gallery
The V&A is open daily 10:00 until 17:45 and until 22:00 on Fridays
Read more about… Victoria & Albert Museum London