These little dwellings have so many stories to tell – not just about toys and childhood, but architecture, family structures, domestic life and how people have lived throughout the ages.
There is also an incredible variety from country mansions, Georgian town houses and high-rise flats to a multi-coloured kaleidoscope house filled with designer furniture and artwork. One suburban council house shows a family with tiny gas masks poised for an air-raid in the thick of World War Two, while beside an adjacent modern country house, an outdoor swimming pool would be enticing if only it weren't so small.
Inhabitants, lodgers, servants and guests have been brought to life through recordings. As you explore the dolls’ houses, they talk you through the challenges of rationing, the rising status of women through the Georgian era, the challenges of living in an industrial city and the introduction of electric lamps in London.
Their stories are playful and fascinating, imaginative and perfectly in keeping with the role of the doll’s house as a domestic teaching aid, a place for play and escape, and a record of lifestyles. The stories of those who owned the houses are just as colourful too.
There’s something a little bit unnerving about the obsessive detail that goes into the creation of each doll's house, which in this case only adds to their gravitational pull. Small Stories has lovingly restored these details, giving us more to see than you might think.
|What||Small Stories, V&A Museum of Childhood|
V&A Museum of Childhood
Cambridge Heath Rd, London, E2 9PA | MAP
|Nearest tube||Bethnal Green (underground)|
13 Dec 14 – 06 Sep 15, 10:00 AM – 5:45 PM
|Website||Click here for more information|