With an E-Type inside and C, D and E out front, Jaguar made a splash at the V&A
I had been meaning to visit the ‘Best of British’ design exhibition at the V&A, so when an invitation for an evening private view hosted by Jaguar dropped through my electronic letterbox, I booked it in.
The connection was that the curators had picked a fixed-head E-Type as their automotive high point (aesthetically I can see that, but for technical advance I’d have put a mini on the stand) and while Jaguar brought head of design Ian Callum and global communications head Frank Klass along, it wasn’t to announce any startling news but merely, in essence, to tell us that design matters as much to the company now as it ever has. In his brief speech Callum spoke about the weight of expectation about his ‘don’t call it the new E-Type’ and how important good design is to his beloved firm.
Having spent time with this genial scotsman, I’m happy this isn’t just a company line but a sincere view. The exhibition is closed now, so I won’t tell you what a startling mix it was – inter-city trains, Johnny Rotten’s t-shirt, the Skylon and David Bowie’s spangly one-legged stage suit. But you can borrow my catalogue if you want.