Cardillo

Postmodern Cafe

Victoria & Albert Museum

LONDON, UK — 26 August 2011


Mies + Venturi. Modern in plan and ‘Post’ in elevation, Postmodern Cafe is a divertissement, a quest between Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Robert Venturi.

Urban baroque strategy. Two façades capture glances across the V&A’s 1970s Exhibition Road hall.

Symmetry and negation. Although symmetrical, they are perceived from diagonal points of view. The front view seems to be denied by the pathway.

Inflection. On the façades, figures converge toward the centre. Though symmetrical overall, each side is unequal.

Archetypes. Like huge frescoes, the façades recall the Pre-Modern bond between painting and architecture. Vinyl graffiti refigure themes of Tympanum and Arch: two contrapositive triangles in a Suprematistic broken tympanum and a stretched arc framing a shard of the Aston Webb screen behind.

Stripes. Crossing the space, there are stripes everywhere, evoking ephemeral structure on a shoreline and retroactive presages close to Giò Ponti and Postmodernism: Art is fluid. Although categorized, it escapes boundaries.


Antonino Cardillo, Postmodern Cafe, Victoria and Albert Museum, Exhibition Road, London, 2011.

Antonino Cardillo, Postmodern Cafe, Victoria & Albert Museum, Exhibition Road, London, 2011.



Venue

Aston Webb, Exhibition Road Screen, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1909. Photography: Antonino Cardillo, 2011.

Aston Webb, Exhibition Road Screen, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 1909, demolished in 2014. Photography: Antonino Cardillo, 2011.



Logo

The logo of the Postmodern Cafe, London, 2011. Graphic design: Antonino Cardillo.

The logo of the Postmodern Cafe, London, 2011.
Graphic design: Antonino Cardillo.



Client

To complement the V&A’s keynote exhibition Postmodernism: Style and Subversion 1970–90, the London Design Festival invites you to a Postmodern Cafe at the V&A’s Exhibition Road entrance. Designed by Italian architect Antonino Cardillo, the cafe references many of the style’s Italian design roots, and includes items by Alessi, one of the movement’s early champions. V&A visitors and Festival guests are invited to meet, eat, lounge and revel.

The London Design Festival 2011, London, Sept. 2011, p. 43.




Data

Time: July–Aug. 2011
Venue: Victoria & Albert Museum, Exhibition Rd, South Kensington, London, UK
Area: 250 m²
Typology: reception/bar




Credits

Client: London Design Festival (via Suzanne Trocmé)
Director: Ben Evans
Deputy Director: William Knight
Consultant Curator: Suzanne Trocmé
Head of LDF at the V&A: Victoria Broackes
Architecture design: Antonino Cardillo
Text: Antonino Cardillo
English translation: Charles Searson
Photography: Antonino Cardillo
Vector graphic: Antonino Cardillo




References

ANTONINO CARDILLO, ‘Taking a position’, build Das Architekten-Magazin, no. 5/11, ed. Ralf Ferdinand Broekman and Olaf Winkler, Wuppertal, Oct. 2011, pp. 44–46.

ANONYMOUS, ‘Postmodern Cafe’, in The London Design Festival 2011 Guide, London, Sept. 2011, pp. 8, 9, 43, 183.

ANONYMOUS, ‘About the London Design Festival 2011’, vam.ac.uk, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, accessed 26 Aug. 2011.

ANONYMOUS, ‘Postmodern Cafe: London Design Festival at the V&A’, londondesignfestival.com, London, accessed 26 Aug. 2011.