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Christopher Kane’s message of joy has been plastered across the V&A Dundee

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The Scottish designer initially created the artwork for Dazed’s Alone Together campaign earlier this year

Cast your mind back 4,893 years to mid-April and you may recall a project we launched as part of our #AloneTogether campaign, which raised money for NHS Trust Barts Charity. 

Diving into our little black book of artists, designers, musicians, and more, we rounded up a bunch of some of our closest collaborators and creatives and asked them to come up with a poster imagining a post-pandemic future, which we then raffled off to our readers. With artworks by the likes of Charles Jeffrey, Boot Boyz Biz, GmbH, Samuel Ross, Wolfgang Tillmans, and Vivienne Westwood on the line-up, all proceeds went towards buying vital equipment for the fight against COVID-19.

But that’s not where things ended. Fast forward to now, and one of the posters has been reappropriated as a huge artwork splashed across one side of Dundee’s V&A Museum. Designed by Christopher Kane, a message reading ‘Be open to the Joy you deserve’ faces out onto the wide expanse of the Tay River, and welcomes those driving across the Tay Road Bridge into the city. 

Riffing on the Scottish designer’s ‘More Joy’ mantra, the artwork forms part of new exhibition Now Accepting Contactless: Design in a Global Pandemic. Kicking off this weekend, as the museum throws its doors open for the first time since March, the show brings together a series of objects demonstrating creativity in a time of crisis, including medical illustrations, a selection of scrubs crafted by students and volunteers at Dundee’s Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design, and more. 

“In these unprecedented times, Be open to the Joy you deserve takes on an even deeper meaning as a talisman of hope and good karma,” said Kane of the work. “We hope this mantra will be a positive affirmation to the people of Dundee, and serve as a reminder to be open to the feeling of joy.”

Now Accepting Contactless: Design in a Global Pandemic opens at the V&A Dundee on August 27. For more information and to book your free visiting slot, head here, and check out the full gallery of posters below.