More than 100,000 engage in museum's pre-opening programme

The V&A Dundee design museum has engaged with more than 100,000 people in its pre-opening programme, according to arts chiefs.

The announcement came as the Scottish Parliament held a reception for the museum ahead of its opening on September 15.

Exhibitions attracted 56,902 people while staff talks, including to Asian and Muslim community groups in Dundee, attracted 23,945 people.

The Design in Motion travelling exhibition drew in 11,956 visitors and public events attracted 10,540 people - bringing the total to 103,343.

It promises to bring international touring exhibitions from the V&A and other museums to Scotland, making Dundee the principle location for V&A exhibitions in the UK outside London.

Philip Long, director, said: "V&A Dundee is a new museum for the whole of Scotland, and since 2013 our team has been active across Scotland, the UK and overseas.

"Design is fundamentally about improving people's lives, and from the start of V&A Dundee we've put people at the heart of our programme - and we've gone out to them, in schools, community halls, shopping centres and even a mobile travelling gallery."

Museum chiefs are now looking forward to on the opening date and showcasing "world-class" exhibitions.

Mr Long added: "Now we're focused on the hard work ahead, to get V&A Dundee opens on September 15, and to show world-class exhibitions alongside permanent galleries and a regularly changing programme of events for people of all ages."

Kengo Kuma visits V&A Dundee
The V&A's activities ahead of its opening have engaged with more than 100,00 people (Andrew Milligan/PA)

The museum's first exhibition, Ocean Liners: Speed and Style, will re-imagine the golden age of ocean travel and explore all aspects of ship design from engineering on the Clyde, to architecture, interiors and the opulent fashion and lifestyle aboard.

Young people will play a central role in the museum's opening event and a new V&A Dundee Young People's Collective will help design and plan the opening celebration.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs said: "The V&A Dundee team are doing an amazing job capturing the imagination of people of all ages and from all walks of life, promoting the forthcoming museum opening in September and inspiring a love of Scottish culture, creativity and design country-wide.

"The Scottish Government has been a long-time supporter of V&A Dundee. I am confident the project will help attract further inward business investment and promote tourism growth in Dundee, across the region and throughout Scotland."

The museum is supported by the Scottish Government, Heritage Lottery Fund, Dundee City Council, the UK Government, Creative Scotland, Scottish Enterprise, University of Dundee, Abertay University and many trusts, companies and private donors.

Seona Reid, chairwoman of the Heritage Lottery Fund Scotland Committee, said: "I am delighted that the £14.1m grant from Heritage Lottery Fund, given on behalf of National Lottery players, has helped to make this possible."

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